Of late, instances of sexual harassment by actors-filmmakers are being ‘exposed’ by actresses in Hollywood, Bollywood as well as in other language film industries in India. Preity Zinta and Priyanka Chopra have spoken at length about this in the past and it’s now the turn of the 29-year old Delhi-born actress Swara Bhaskar to narrate her own tale of the bitter experience.
Swara, who has worked in films such as Raanjhanaa and Nil Battey Sannata, is presently working for her upcoming film Veere Di Wedding. Talking about the sexual abuse practice, she conceded that the trend was prevailing till today. “Of course, I lost out on quite a few offers because I refused the sex-for-films offer which only made me vulnerable and nervous.
“A few filmmakers didn’t even respond to my calls/messages as they were certain that I won’t ‘go to bed’ with them to bag film offers. My educational backdrop and my nature of being an outspoken girl made them avoid me,” she said and added that she was even groped by a mob while shooting at a remote location quite early in her career.
“One particular producer during that time called me to his hotel room. When I went, I found him drunk. He told me to hug him as he spoke about sex and love. I left the room at once and when I met him again after a fortnight, he again tried the same tricks with me. I completed the film with an escort in tow,” she laughs.