#MeToo Hits Indian Stand-Up: AIB Actor Called Out For Alleged Sexual Harassment

The accounts presented by Mahima Kukreja alleging sexual harassment against Utsav Chakraborty are distressing to say the least.

It might appear that the #MeToo in Bollywood is already underway, after Tanushree Dutta’s allegations against  Nana Patekar. The fire is about to engulf the stand-up comedy scene as well, with Utsav Chakraborty being accused of harassing women through unsolicited dick pics and repeated requests for nudes and topless pictures.

Twitter personality, Mahima Kukreja, was the first one to call Chakraborty out on his behaviour, in reply to an article where the comedian expressed second-hand embarrassment about 1,300 Indian men leching at women on a cruise. Kukreja switched on her DMs and requested women to reach out to her, if they had been harassed by Chakraborty.

Her inbox was soon flooded with horrific anecdotes of Chakraborty’s predatory behaviour.

It should be noted that a majority of the girls/women in question (including a 17-year-old minor) are strangers, which points the needle towards pathological, predatory behaviour.

Stand-up comedians Aditi Mittal and Varun Grover have publicly condemned the allegations against Chakraborty. Grover called this a ‘failing’ on the part of the industry, that is still relatively new. While Mittal asked him what he was doing about his behaviour that made women feel unsafe around him.

Another comic Rohan Desai apologised for supporting/defending Chakraborty on earlier occasions. Desai claims to have confronted his ‘friend’ about it, but is said to have been convinced that it was merely a misunderstanding. Desai apologised for believing Chakraborty and not calling him out sooner.

Understandably,  a number of tweets were addressed to All India Bakchod (AIB) – the company that has employed Chakraborty for a number of their sketches. But they held their individuals silences and released a statement saying that they condemned the allegations and would fully co-operate with any investigation into the matter.

Fellow comics and journalists called out more male comics for not speaking out against Chakraborty’s actions. Kukreja has tweeted that the person who ‘runs things at AIB’ was aware of Chakraborty’s behaviour, and still chose to work with him.

The accounts presented on Kukreja’s Twitter feed should be more than a clear reason to initiate an investigation in the matter. Chakraborty has responded with the following ‘statement’ –

Of course, people couldn’t miss the fact that it didn’t have the word ‘sorry’ in it.