Months after taking a stand against his former Housefull 4 director Sajid Khan, actor Riteish Deshmukh says the Me Too movement should now seek a route that can get the survivors of sexual harassment justice after they name their alleged perpetrators.
Last November, Sajid was outed by as many as four women from Bollywood, who alleged the director had sexually abused them. The director, who was then filming Housefull 4, stepped down from the project after the allegations surfaced. At that time, Riteish had issued a statement in solidarity with the women.
“Deeply disturbing to hear and read the news of so many women who had to go through these incidents of harassment in various fields. I think it’s extremely brave of every woman to have shared their stories. All need to be heard and not judged. I stand with them today. #MeToo,” the actor-producer had tweeted.
On Friday evening, as he sat for an interaction with a group of mediapersons for his upcoming comedy, Total Dhamaal, the actor was asked how hard the allegations against Sajid hit him and the Housefull 4 team. Riteish and Sajid have worked in films like Heyy Babyy, Humshakals and Housefull 1 and 2.
“Whatever I had to say on Housefull and my stand on it, I have tweeted so I don’t think I need to say more on that but at the same time I want to say that it has given immense strength to women and even men, who may have to go through this or have to face it. At least, you have an opportunity to come out and name,” Riteish said.
Taking a pause of a few seconds, the actor added that people are right now confused on how to take the movement forward so that the perpetrators are brought to justice.
“I just feel that it (the movement) has started, which is fantastic, but I think it also needs to figure out a way so that it can find its way to justice, beyond just naming a person and saying that this is what it is. I think people also get lost as to how to take it forward. Be it court, police or whatever, one needs to figure out a way so that there’s certain justice given.”