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Khushboo Sharma

IWB Blogger

With Alok Nath Outed As An Alleged Rapist, It’s Evident How Indians Indulge In Blind Hero Worship

  • IWB Post
  •  October 9, 2018

The #MeToo movement seems to get bigger and stronger in India, as the industry maestros are finally being named and shamed as sexual offenders. Alok Nath, or as we have hitherto known him “the most sanskaari man” in the industry, is the latest addition to the list.

Veteran writer-producer Vinta Nanda took to Facebook yesterday and in a long post shared how she was “endlessly” abused by Alok Nath at a  party almost two decades ago. In the post, she recollected the incident from the 1990s, the period when Nath played the lead role in Vinta’s show Tara.

She wrote, “He was after my lead girl. She was not interested in him. He was an alcoholic, shameless and obnoxious but he was also the television star of that decade, so not only was he forgiven for all his bad behaviour but many of the guys would egg him on to be his worst. My lead female actor was being harassed by him.”

The lead actress brought the matters to the producers’ knowledge, and thus Nath was made to quit the show. However, at the time of his final shot, he “felt up our female lead, and very viciously,” wrote Vinta. Despite him being fired from the show, the channel’s management brought Nath back and also jeopardized Vinta’s career who had four shows running for the channel and all of them were immediately discontinued.

However, Vinta’s story didn’t end just there. She wrote, “I was invited to a party to this man’s house; his wife, my best friend, was out of town. It was usual for our group of friends from theatre to meet regularly, so there was nothing unusual about my going to the party….As the evening flowed, my drinks were mixed and I began to feel strange.  Then at around 2 am, I left his house… I started to walk home on the empty streets, although the distance to my own house was long. Midway, I was accosted by this man who was driving his own car and he asked me to sit in it and said he would drop me home. I trusted him and sat in his car. I have faint memory after that.”

“I can remember more liquor being poured into my mouth and I remember being violated endlessly. When I woke up the next afternoon, I was in pain. I hadn’t just been raped, I was taken to my own house and had been brutalised,” she added.

Nath kept haunting her after that. He managed to enter another show that Vinta was writing and directing. She shared, “He created an environment in which I was made to feel threatened so I asked the producers to release me from directing the series because I didn’t want to be around where he was. I continued to write the show. Here’s the most difficult part, the main reason why I have taken so long to come out with the truth. While I was working on this new series, he asked me to come to his house again and I went to allow him to violate me. I needed the job and didn’t want to leave it as I needed the money. It was after this that I quit.”

In the post, Vinta also shared how the entire episode messed up her career and left her mentally traumatised.

“The reason why I wrote my story (on Facebook) was because I felt that moment of “now or never”. This moment never came to me in the ’90s. Because there was no such (#metoo) movement, or gender discourse being talked about. If something happened to you, you kept quiet, that was the kind of accepted environment at the time,” Vinta told Firstpost.

Responding to the allegations Nath said, “Neither I am denying this nor do I would agree with it. It (rape) must have happened, but someone else would have done it. Well, I do not want to talk much about it as for the matter if it has come out, it will be stretched.”

Thankfully, the industry people are finally getting the hang of it and supporting women as they come out with their jarring stories. Here is how many from the industry, including Sushant Singh and Swara Bhaskar, extended their support for Vinta:

 

sushant singh on Twitter

Dear @vintananda I am so so sorry. As @CintaaOfficial a show-cause Notice will be sent to @aloknath first thing in the mrng, why he shudnt b expld. Unfortunately we’ve to follow the due process. I urge u to file a complaint against this vile creature, we extend u full support.

Shephali Bhatt on Twitter

I have waited for this moment to come for 19 years.” @vintananda’s heart-wrenching post which reaffirms that #TimesUp, even for the (so-called) “most #Sanskaari person in the film and television industry.” #MeToo #MeTooIndia

Swara Bhasker on Twitter

Heart wrenching. 😢😢😢😢 https://t.co/myVEYDAfTu

 

Shruti Seth on Twitter

Oh my God!!!!! This is horrific. @vintananda you brave woman. Thank you for telling your story and hopefully helping million others from suffering the same. Bravo! https://t.co/12qOs2M5LF

 

Sai on Twitter

You will never rest in peace, I hope you rot in hell #AlokNath #TimesUp #MeToo

Shobha Sant on Twitter

This monster #AlokNath should be jailed and the keys should be thrown away. I pity any family that he has. To be related to a monster of this level. @vintananda be strong and and I pray for peace and vindication after this nightmare for you. https://t.co/ZDmgDfEaPb

 

As India’s “most Sanskaari man’s” Sanskaari tag goes down the pothole let us all think how many times we have excused our men, and rather felicitated them blindly. #TimesUp I say.

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