In the early hours of October 9, Cine and TV Artists’ Association (CINTAA) general secretary and spokesperson Sushant Singh tweeted his support for veteran writer-producer Vinita Nanda who has accused actor Alok Nath of rape.
Mr. Singh’s tweet, from his personal account said, “Dear @vintananda I am so so sorry. As @CintaaOfficial a show-cause notice will be sent to @aloknath first thing in the mrng, why he shudnt b expld. Unfortunately we’ve to follow the due process. I urge u to file a complaint against this vile creature, we extend u full support.”
The Hindu spoke to Payal Nair, a member of the executive committee at CINTAA who handles dispute settlement and media among other things. “As far as this case is concerned [Ms. Nanda’s accusations against Mr. Nath] we have to come to terms with, said Ms. Nair adding that Alok Nath is a member of CINTAA while Ms. Nanda isn’t.”
Ms. Nair added the executive committee would meet in a day or two to discuss their course of action. “We will have to discuss what step has to be taken. Each day [more] cases are [surfacing]. It’s very early [now] and every case is different, to have one common judgement for all is not right.”
Ms. Nair also clarified that reports about CINTAA sending Mr. Nath a show-cause notice were made by Mr. Singh in a personal capacity.
On Monday October 8, Ms. Nanda posted a Facebook status, which has since gone viral, recalling Mr. Nath's misconduct on the sets of the popular 90s TV show Tara . The long post included how Mr. Nath “viciously” molested the protagonist of the show.
In recently published reports actor Navneet Nishant supported Ms. Nanda’s claims and admitted to indeed slapping Mr. Nath, fed up of his harassment (which was included in the viral post). “I can remember more liquor being poured into my mouth and I remember being violated endlessly. When I woke up the next afternoon, I was in pain. I hadn’t just been raped, I was taken to my own house and had been brutalised. I couldn’t get up for my bed. I told some of my friends but everybody advised me to forget about it and move on. My company was closed but I got a job to write and direct a series for Plus Channel. The man found his way through the casting route and became one of the lead actors on the show.”
Despite repeated attempts at contacting Mr. Nath, his phone remained unavailable. Earlier today, in a television interview with Zoom TV, the actor declared the incident to be Ms. Nanda’s figment of imagination going as far as to neither admit nor deny any of the claims made.
Ms. Nanda, on the other hand, exclusively spoke to The Hindu through her spokesperson. She said, “What did you expect him to do? Accept that he did it? Obviously, he will deny. But today, times have changed. The #MeToo movement has given me the courage to come out and let the load off my chest after so many years. I don't know what I will do next but one thing is clear. I am now fearless. I will take this to its logical ending. CINTAA and its stand has given me strength. Like I said I will take matters to the logical ending.”