On February 2, 2020 the well-known choreographer and the General Secretary of Indian Film and Television Choreographers Association (IFTCA) Ganesh Acharya filed a complaint for a non-cognizable offence (NC) against the woman who accused him of depriving her of work.
The woman is a 33 year old choreographer who filed the complaint at Amboli police station in Mumbai and Maharashtra State Commission for Women, whereshe alleged that she was asked to give commission from her income and was forced to watch adult videos.
The allegations were against Ganesh Acharyawhoin his statement to Bombay Times said- “She was part of a group of dancers I worked with in 2007. Apart from that, I don’t know this girl at all. The accusations of assault in my presence and on my instructions are false, as I had left for a shoot before the altercation between her and the two others took place.”
Further he commented on the accusation for commission on which she was expelled from IFTCA.
“The decision to expel a member is taken after everyone’s consent, and she was expelled owing to her crude and unflattering remarks on dance masters. I am against the practice of commission and don’t work with coordinators, so why will I demand commission from her? Disgruntled by the termination of her membership, she sent letters and notices to IFTCA and its members making false and frivolous allegations of not letting her work and harassing her. However, in these alleged complaints, there was no mention of her latest cooked-up story of porn videos being shown to her. Her accusations are false and baseless”.
This is not the first instance when Ganesh Acharya is facing harassment allegations. During the #MeToo movement in India, Tanushree Dutta also lashed out at Acharya, accusing him of spreading rumours about her and ruining her professional reputation.
Ganesh Acharya is a big name in the film industry he had won the National Film Award 2018 for choreography in “Toilet Ek Prem Katha”, he has credits in many hit Bollywood songs such as Padmavat, Zero, Simmba, Sanju and Judwa 2.
Acharya is not the only one who faced such allegations, the year 2018 experienced the rise of the #MeToo movement where famous personalities like Alok Nath, Nana Patekar, Sajid Khan, and Subhash Ghai faced such allegationsresulting in a number of counter defamation claims.
However in this scenario, Acharya has filed a criminal case against the assistant choreographer denying the allegations and contending that those are baseless and false.
The case of Vishakha & Ors. v. State of Rajasthan AIR 1997 SC 3011which highlighted workplace harassment, provided certain guidelines to be followed and imposed sanctions against the non-compliance of the same, is of significant importance as these instances today occur on a routine basis, one needs to brush up the norms and the system needs to make sure that the guidelines are in compliance so that the case holds its importance for a long time.
Author: Aarya Mishra