Geetika Tyagi: Would've been fair had Aamir Khan heard both sides of story
Geetika Tyagi says while she never said her alleged harasser Subhash Kapoor shouldn't get work, it pains her that nobody has spoken about her loss of livelihood in the five years she has been fighting her case in court
This feels strange," says Geetika Tyagi, referring to Aamir Khan's recent decision to come on board Mogul. Only 11 months ago — at a time when the #MeToo movement had taken India by storm — the superstar had stepped away from the project, when it was brought to his notice that director Subhash Kapoor had been accused of sexual abuse by Tyagi in 2014. However, on Monday evening, the actor reversed his decision, stating that he is doing "what my heart says is right".
It won't be wrong to say that despite his best intentions, the association of Khan — one of the biggest superstars of Bollywood — with a #MeToo accused serves as a blowback to the movement. "I had commended Kiran Rao and Aamir Khan [last year] because it gave hope to more women to speak up about their own stories. But I had never asked for it from them. Now that Subhash has been hired back, it's not like someone [from their end] reached out to me. It would have been a fair game had they considered both sides of the story," reasons Tyagi, who had, in 2014, uploaded a video that corroborated her claims and saw Kapoor apologising to her for his actions.
Explaining his change of heart, Khan stated that he had spent sleepless nights worrying that his actions had caused Kapoor to "lose his right to earn a livelihood." Bring this up with Tyagi, and she cuts in, "I have never said that Subhash shouldn't get work. But after I complained, I did not get work for a long time.
The industry is patriarchal. Only women face the repercussions of complaining against sexual harassment, whether in the workplace or otherwise. They are ostracised when they complain. It's a sensitive decision on Aamir's part that Subhash shouldn't be treated badly until proven guilty. But what about my livelihood that has stopped since 2014? Criminal cases take time [to be served justice]and that's a reality."
In a statement, Khan also explained that he reached out to Kapoor's female colleagues "who spoke highly of him" before arriving at the decision. "People have to remember that if a person slips, he is careful next time around," she reasons. However, Tyagi asserts that the five-year legal battle has only made her stronger. She refuses to be discouraged by the superstar's decision. "Aamir re-hiring him doesn't affect my case, which is subjudice. I did everything by the book — went to the cops, filed charges, went to the lawyers. I believe in my fight, the system and I have my evidence."
Sign up for all the latest news, top galleries and trending videos from Mid-day.comSubscribe
The story behind Aamir Khan's daughter Ira Khan's tattoo and mystery man!