‘Queen’ director Vikas Bahl accused of sexual assault, Anurag Kashyap feels ‘sorry’ for not handling matter properly

After Tanushree Dutta, now another story has been brought into the limelight with much vigour. If reports are to be believed, Queen director Vikas Bahl has now been accused of sexually harassing a woman who used to work as a crew member with him in Phantom Films.

If reports are to be believed, the said victim accusing Vikas Bahl of sexually assaulting her three years back during the pre-release promotional tour of their movie, Bombay Velvet.

According to the HuffPost report, Bahl insisted on dropping her to her hotel room in the early hours of May 5, 2015 and pretended to pass out drunk on her bed, only to awaken soon after and masturbate on her.

The woman said she reached out to Kashyap and detailed her experience, but no action was taken while Bahl continued to harass her until she finally quit the company.

In a recent interview to HuffPostIndia, Kashyap admitted that he had failed her. “Whatever happened was wrong. We didn’t handle it well, we failed. I cannot blame anyone but myself,” Kashyap said. “But now we are determined to do better. We believe her completely. She has our undying support. What Bahl has done is horrifying. We are already on our path of course correction and will do everything in our capacity to fix it.”

He also took to Twitter to post his statement in which he wrote, “While at Phantom, I did everything I could, within what I was told by my partner and his lawyers. For legal and financial decisions, I was fully dependent on my partner and his team. They took care of those things so I could focus on what I did better, creatives. His word and his team’s word on any matter used to be the final word for us.”

He also said how he was ill-advised about the whole matter, “According to legal advice provided to me then, I was told that we had very limited options. Now in hindsight and after taking stock of things myself, I can quite see how I was ill-advised.”

The statement further reads that they took a strong stand against Bahl by barring him from the office premises and taking away his signing authority.

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He also disclosed that the woman did not inform about the incident to him for a very long time. “What makes it worse personally for me is that the victim did not share the incident with me for a long time because she saw me dealing with my depression,” he added.

Meanwhile, Filmmakers Anurag Kashyap, Vikramaditya Motwane, Madhu Mantena and Vikas Bahl have decided to dissolve production house Phantom Films after seven years of partnership.

But, the four founders of Phantom Films will continue to work with partners Reliance Entertainment individually, Shibasish Sarkar, Chief Operating Officer, Reliance Entertainment told IANS.

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