Casting director Mukesh Chhabra, who was all set to make his directorial debut with Kizzie Aur Manny (the official Hindi remake of The Fault in our Stars), has been fired by Fox Star Hindi from the project amid sexual harassment allegations.
Fox Star Hindi put out a statement on Twitter that read, “As a responsible organization, Star India takes any allegation of sexual harassment of women at workplace very seriously hence Fox Star Studios has suspended the services of Mukesh Chhabra, director of our film, Kizzie Aur Manny, which is under production, till the Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) of M/s Mukesh Chhabra Casting Company concludes its inquiry into the allegations against him.”
— Fox Star Hindi (@foxstarhindi) October 19, 2018
A few days ago, two harassment allegations against Chhabra surfaced in Mid-day and the director denied them. He said, “It has been years of hard work and I have been around in the industry. It is unfortunate that people are resorting to name calling and making wild allegations. Hard work and sweat cannot be erased by making false accusations. I deny any such incident took place. If anyone is indulging in rumour mongering and mischievous slandering, I will take every possible legal action to protect my reputation.”
Following this, an ICC investigation of the matter was started by Chhabra’s casting company, M/s Mukesh Chhabra Casting Company.
Earlier today, Sushant Singh Rajput put out screenshots of conversations between him and his co-star Sanjana Sanghi, trying to clear his name from the ‘smear campaign’. There were accusations that Sushant had behaved inappropriately with the leading lady.
Mukesh Chhabra had also tweeted, “I totally stand by @itsSSR – no such incident happened on the sets and let’s not have a Twitter trial and make an innocent person suffer for somebody else’s ulterior motives I had clarified this on twitter long back and I still maintain it.”
These rumours started in August and hinted that the project had to be stalled because of the lead actor’s behaviour and at that point, Mukesh Chhabra had put up a tweet saying the film had been an ‘absolute joyride’.
— Mukesh Chhabra CSA (@CastingChhabra) August 22, 2018
With Mukesh Chhabra off the project, it is yet to be seen what happens to Kizzie Aur Manny next.