BOLLYWOOD CHOREOGRAPHER Ganesh Acharya and two of his assistants were booked on Wednesday for allegedly sexually harassing a 33-year-old dancer in 2009.
The woman has filed a complaint at Amboli police station on charges of molestation, sexual harassment, obscenity, causing hurt and criminal intimidation under the IPC on Wednesday. The probe has been transferred to Oshiwara police station. In her complaint, the woman has alleged that the incident took place when she was working as a junior dancer on a project with Acharya and had gone to his office to collect her dues worth Rs 25,000. However, while allegedly refusing to pay her, Acharya showed her pornographic material on his laptop.
“I walked out of his office, warning him not to repeat his behaviour. Those days, Acharya did not employ a coordinator so I had to visit his office to collect payment for work either from him or from a member of his staff. The next three times that I visited his office, he behaved the same way,” the woman told The Indian Express.
During her last visit to Acharya’s office, the woman alleged Acharya told her she would have to sleep with him in order to get ahead in the film industry. The woman claimed she continued to work in films and television shows for the next decade but has been unable to get any projects for the last two months. “After Acharya became the general secretary of Indian Cine and TV Choreographers Association, he warned producers not to work with me and cancelled my membership…” she said.
Last month, the woman had filed a complaint with the Maharashtra State Commission for Women. Acharya and his assistants — Jayashree Kelkar and Preeti Lad — are also alleged to have attacked the woman when she went to Amboli police station to get an FIR lodged on January 26. Police had then registered a non-cognisible offence against them.
Senior Inspector Dayanand Banger of Oshiwara police said the accused would be summoned to record their statements. In a press meet last week, Acharya had denied the allegations and claimed the woman’s membership to the association was terminated after she bad-mouthed its board members.
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