"The Respondent [Jeetendra] smelled strongly of alcohol and was naked from the waist down."
A sex abuse complaint has been filed against veteran Bollywood actor Ravi Kapoor, better known as Jeetendra. His female cousin made the complaint in Himachal Pradesh, claiming he had sexually abused her.
The incident allegedly took place in 1971, when she was aged 18 and the actor was 28 years old.
She claimed that Jeetendra had asked her father for permission to take her to his film shoot, without her knowledge. At the filming’s location, the star allegedly sexually assaulted her.
Outlook India revealed images of the letter of complaint, which details the harassment. She says they had arrived at the film set during the evening. The actor reportedly took her to his hotel room, which contained two beds.
He initially left the room, but the victim claimed he later returned. She explained:
“He joined the two beds together while I was still asleep. As I rested on my side, facing the wall, he entered the bed and mounted me from behind with his penis erect. The Respondent [Jeetendra] smelled strongly of alcohol and was naked from the waist down.”
Jeetendra’s cousin added that despite her attempts to stop the abuse, he continued to rub himself against her.
Read the full complaint here:
While the incident happened roughly 47 years ago, the victim cited the #MeToo movement as a motive for coming forward.
She also explained that she wanted “closure and healing for the indelible marks left on her soul due to the sexual abuse and the mental trauma suffered for years after the sexual abuse”.
In addition, she felt able to speak out after the death of her parents. She believed they would have felt “heartbroken” over the alleged actions of their nephew.
Due to Jeetendra’s wealth, connections and power, the victim has requested for herself and her family to remain anonymous from the media. Indeed, the actor has been regarded as an influential figure in the Hindi industry.
A chairman of the Balaji Telefilms, Balaji Motion Pictures and ALT Entertainment, he also received many Lifetime accolades. His acting career spans from the 1960s to the 90s, appearing in over 200 films.
The star is also the father of Ekta Kapoor, a celebrated Indian TV producer.
The actor’s lawyer Rizwan Siddiquee, acting as a representative for him, released a full statement on the allegations, denying them. He said:
“Foremost my client specifically and categorically denies any such incident. Besides even otherwise such baseless, ridiculous and fabricated claims cannot be entertained by any Court of law or the law enforcement agencies after a span of almost 50 years.
“The Statute has provided a justice delivery system through the Courts, and the Limitation Act 1963 was specifically enacted to ensure that all genuine complaints are made within a maximum time limit of three years, so that a proper investigation is carried out and timely justice is delivered.
“Besides I want to make it specifically clear that the law does not give any person any rights or liberties of making any baseless, ridiculous or fabricated claims against any man publicly and seek to defame him with a hidden personal agenda.
“Media is therefore adviced to cautiously refrain from giving any importance to such ridiculous, baseless and fabricated claims, and they should not participate in any way whatsoever in defaming or assassinating the character of any man in such cases.
“In any event the timing of this baseless complaint seems to be nothing but a miserable effort made by a jealous competitor to disrupt the business activities of my client and his esteemed Company. Such efforts are therefore in all fairness treated with the contempt it truly deserves.”
Despite this, the complaint will no doubt send shockwaves throughout Bollywood.