'Instead of getting rehabilitated in Bollywood, I have forced into legal hassles while everyone else watches the drama.'
With Nana Patekar's NGO suing Tanushree Dutta for defamation, the actress, who is considered the pioneer of the MeToo movement in India, finds herself being pushed financially and emotionally into a corner.
Tanushree tells Subhash K Jha, "It's been very hard on me emotionally, psychologically and financially."
Tanushree, isn't it ironical that you were slapped with a hefty defamation case on the same day when Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison for sexual offences?
It's ironical that not only am I fighting for justice alone with no sign of redress for my personal losses, but also to be inundated with legal threats for speaking out against harassment and corruption is another level of anarchy in India.
This must be really tough on you.
It's been very hard on me emotionally, psychologically and financially these 12 years, after the violence on the sets of Horn OK Please in 2008.
I had gone into severe depression post that episode for many years because the level of cunning manipulation, public humiliation and threats I had to endure was too much for me.
Are you getting any support from the Hindi film fraternity?
No. Instead of getting justice and getting rehabilitated into work in Bollywood, my primary source of income, I have been pushed and forced into legal hassles by these people while everyone else watches the drama.
I will remember this and make a report of it.
I feel I have been let down a lot by many people and I will return the favour when I rise to power again. And I will.
What impact will this defamation case against you have on the MeToo movement in the Indian entertainment industry?
What I am most concerned about is the impact it might have on women, girls and boys of the next generation who are being taught about feminism, human rights and empowerment.
I maintain my earlier conviction that when it comes to human rights, women's safety and anti-corruption, India still has a long way to go to catch up with America.
In India, too many bad people call the shots and too few good people lend a helping hand.