After Bollywood actress Tanushree Dutta accused Nana Patekar of sexual harassment, more survivors are coming forward nearly every day and sharing their #MeToo story. Many big names from the entertainment industry have been exposed. Here's the first male survivor (ex-boyfriend of late actress Pratyusha Banerjee and television actor Rahul Raj Singh) to speak out against sexual harassment in the entertainment industry. Rahul Raj has accused screenwriter and producer Mushtaq Shiekh of sexually harassing him.
The actor adds that it is because of Mushtaq that he quit television and his career was destroyed. Read Rahul's #MeToo story here!
Rahul Shares His #MeToo Story
Rahul was quoted by Mid-day as saying, "I have been an actor for the past 10 years, and have now been inspired by the women in our acting, film and TV fraternity to come out with my story of harassment by Mushtaq Shiekh."
How Rahul Met Mushtaq?
The actor reveals he met Mushtaq in 2006. He added, "I was the Grasim Mr India model in 2004, when I was 19 years old. A couple of years later, I came in contact with Mushtaq Shiekh. Mushtaq was a very powerful person in Bollywood then. [He was] someone who was on first-name basis with Shahrukh Khan, Salman Khan, Farah Khan and Ekta Kapoor. He seemed to be impressed with me. I was glad because I realised I would get work."
Mushtaq Asked Rahul To Meet Him After Office Hours!
"He told me, 'I have thought about you for one project and want to cast you in it. Meet me after office hours and we will discuss the project'. I did not want to judge him on his sexual preferences, but after the second and third meeting, he started calling me late at night, around 3 or 4 AM."
Rahul Got Scared!
"He was associated with Mukta Arts at the time, and he showed me a Korean film which he said he would remake in Bollywood, casting me. But one night, he called me at 11 PM near his house. I had already been introduced to his sister Najma and his other married sister. He took me to his house, which had a single room, a bed and a lot of film posters. He told me, 'I am going to do something to you which you are going to enjoy. It will be different, but you will like it'. I got scared."
This Is How Rahul Lost A Film At Mukta Arts
"I told him, 'I know your family. I am not against your preferences, but I am your friend and every relationship is not about sex. He said, 'Don't worry, next time you will be ready'. I left, and lost the film at Mukta Arts."
Mushtaq Asked Rahul To Sleep With Him!
"I was chosen for a TV serial called Amber Dhara. I was popular as the first blind hero on national television. Then I got a call from Mushtaq, telling me that he was the one who had chosen me for the role. That destroyed my confidence and self-belief. Then I was signed up for another show called Mata Ki Chowki [also associated with Mushtaq]. He extended his offer again, that I could sleep with him to keep my job, but I refused. My character was written out of the show soon."
"During another show called Ganesh Leela, Mushtaq's roving eye caught me again. He told me to meet him at night for a drive. We were on a drive in Aarey Milk Colony when he suddenly grabbed my head (towards him) and started unbuttoning me (Rahul's clothes). I got very angry and upset, and told him that I would stop the car and leave him in the middle of the jungle."
Rahul Quit TV Because Of Mushtaq!
He added that he used to earn Rs 3-4 Lakhs per month earlier, and lost his job (had to quit TV) because of Mushtaq. He added that his friend and former roommate Asif Ali (now a film producer) had witnessed his trauma.
Asif Ali Says…
Asif was quoted by Mid-day as saying, "When we were roommates, I asked Rahul why he wasn't getting good projects. He told me about the harassment and demands for sexual favours. I read a few of their chats, but I don't remember their (culprit's) names."
Rahul Shares The Story On His Social Media
He shared the article's snapshot and wrote, "So finally I found a voice for all those supressed emotions that I had been feeling all these years...yes I wish now India had her Metoo! Movement earlier...so many dreams and lives that have been wasted could have been prevented.....nevertheless better late than never!" - (sic)
"My successful career on TV cut short because one man got the lust and power equation wrong...I can only imagine how many others must have suffered the same fate as me....its time we all spoke up..a collective effort to end the casting couch menace....bahut sun liya ki yeh sab to industry mein hota hai ans hota rahega! Ab Bas#Time Khatam#its Payback Time! How many of you havent spoken up yet..hope my article gives u the courage# Metoo # we are all in this together...its time to rock their boat since we have all been living in dangerous waters for a long time now...humein toofano se darr nahi lagta! Plz read support." - (sic)