Vikas Bahl has finally spoken. Nearly a week after being accused of alleged sexual assault by a former colleague at Phantom Films, Bahl has denied the allegations and labelled his former partners Kashyap and Motwane ‘opportunists’. In light of the dissolution of Phantom Films, both Kashyap and Motwane expressed regret about not acting earlier, and in no uncertain terms, called Bahl a sex offender.
Bahl has sent two separate legal notices to his former partners via email for ‘orchestrating a campaign, and making him look like the person responsible for the disbanding of Phantom Films’, in this Mumbai Mirror report.
— Vikramaditya Motwane (@VikramMotwane) October 7, 2018
According to the report, the legal notice also alleges Kashyap for ‘bribing an employee, to make similar allegations against Bahl’. And according to Bahl’s attorney, if this allegation is to be believed, then it casts a shadow on the authenticity of the alleged incident taking place at all.
The allegations go on that Kashyap and Motwane both, acted on hearsay evidence to paint Bahl as a ‘villain’. The report further revealed that Bahl had been in talks with his other partners – Kashyap, Motwane and (Madhu) Mantena, about the dissolution of Phantom Films over ‘creative and professional differences’. And that putting the onus of the shut-down on Bahl, was ‘in bad taste’. Bahl, also mentioned the alleged victim’s account which recounts Kashyap’s ‘sudden moral enlightenment’, stating that there was a more personal agenda driving this.
The accused was named and shamed a long time back. For people who don’t read the details & only the headlines, I have no response. A lot of women work with me and have been around , I am answerable to them & they stand witness to our actions &our struggle to do the right thing.
— Anurag Kashyap (@anuragkashyap72) October 10, 2018
Bahl’s notice threatens civil/criminal defamation unless the two directors withdraw their messages from social and tend an unconditional apology to the director, accused of sexual assault.
Actor Imran Khan weighed in on the issue around Vikas Bahl, saying everyone knew about the director’s alleged misdeeds and the payback has been coming for a while now. Khan, who last appeared in 2015’s Katti Batti, claims to have been advised to not speak about it lest some people say he was doing it solely to revive his flagging career. Khan refused to take names but spoke of a director, who would make contenders for the lead actress take part in bikini photo shoots, the pictures from where would straight make their way into the director’s personal laptop.
Khan recounts being at a social gathering around ‘5-6 months ago’ when a Mumbai Mirror report openly discussed the allegations against Bahl – without taking his name or naming Phantom Films. And even as Khan brought it up, he claims everyone else was too happy to sweep the allegations under the carpet and celebrate his upcoming film with Hrithik Roshan (Super 30).