In a recent development, Jennifer Mistry Bansiwal, an actor from the popular Indian sitcom “Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah,” has accused the show’s producer, Asit Kumarr Modi, along with two others, of sexual harassment. However, Modi and the accused individuals have vehemently denied the allegations, countering that Bansiwal was let go from the show due to her own misbehavior.
Bansiwal, known for her role as Roshan Sodhi on the long-running Sab TV show, sent a formal letter on April 8 to the National Commission for Women (NCW) and Mumbai Police, accusing Modi, project head Sohail Ramani, and executive producer Jatin Bajaj of sexual harassment and outraging the modesty of a woman. The Powai police station received her application on May 8.
According to Bansiwal, she has endured multiple instances of sexual harassment from Modi over the past few years, including uncharitable comments and an incident in March 2019 in Singapore where Modi allegedly made inappropriate remarks and invited her to his room for whisky.
Bansiwal claimed that she had confided in two colleagues about the harassment but was unable to take action due to their ongoing employment on the show. She also alleged that she informed Ramani about her ordeal, but instead of addressing the issue, he threatened to stop her payment for four months, putting pressure on her mentally.
Modi, however, denied the allegations and stated that legal action will be taken against Bansiwal for attempting to defame him and the show. He contended that Bansiwal’s contract was terminated due to her misbehavior on the set, leading to financial losses for the production team.
Ramani and Bajaj, in a joint statement, denied the allegations made by Bansiwal and claimed that her contract was terminated due to her bad behavior and indiscipline during the shoot. They accused Bansiwal of attempting to defame them and the show with baseless allegations.
The incident has sparked a controversy within the entertainment industry, with Bansiwal finally speaking up about the alleged harassment. As the legal proceedings unfold, the future course of action and the impact on the long-standing sitcom remains uncertain.
“Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah” has been on the air since 2008 and is considered one of the longest-running sitcoms in Indian television history, featuring popular actors such as Dilip Joshi, Munmun Dutta, and Mandar Chandwadkar.