One of the seldom discussed aspects of the film industry's casting couch syndrome is the exploitation of young men by a clique of powerful men who are gay. But in a first, an aspiring actor, who recently acted in a film based on homosexuality, has alleged that he was molested by film director Onir.
It's a charge the director emphatically denies, giving compelling reasons to suggest that the encounter was mutual. And now that word has spread, the director, who has made sensitive films like "My Brother Nikhil" and "Bas Ek Pal", is now filing a defamation case against the actor.
The case is against 28-year-old struggling actor Yuvraj Parashar
from Agra. Parashar got his break in the recent " Dunno Y
... Naa Jaane Kyun", starring Zeenat Aman
and based on homosexuality, which was a flop. Undaunted by that, Yuvraj decided to show his film to directors like Onir
and Madhur Bhandarkar in the hope of finding more work. "I approached these guys because they've made sensitive films dealing with similar themes and so thought they wouldn't dismiss my film outright," says Yuvraj. While Bhandarkar pleaded a hectic schedule, Onir invited Yuvraj to his house after a discussion on a social networking site.
Says Yuvraj, "I landed at his home on Tuesday night at 10.45 and we started watching the film on his DVD player in the living room. He offered me wine and made me drink 6-7 glasses of it, after which he suddenly put the film on pause and told me, 'Let's go and sit in the bedroom as the system there is much better.' I walked into the bedroom with him to watch the movie – he played the movie and then suddenly pounced on me." The strapping actor, who unhesitatingly exposes the bite mark on his chest as a result of that alleged attack, claims he was too stunned to react. "I am in pain and I feel nauseated at the thought of what I had to go through on Tuesday. I went to meet him because he is a serious and senior director. But I didn't know that I'd become a prey myself. I couldn't stop him verbally, but I tried to tell him through my gestures that I am not interested. But he never listened to me. Once he was satisfied, he got off, and after that I told him to at least watch the movie. I left his house as soon as possible after that."
Next morning, Onir sent him a text message enquiring about his hickeys, to which Yuvraj responded with a "Good Morning" message with several smileys. Says Yuvraj, "I was too stunned to know what to do and I didn't want to offend a senior director like him. So, I sent him that message with smileys."
But Onir is stricken at how his reputation is being maligned. He says that Yuvraj, who's physically much stronger and hardly unable to 'resist the advances' of a shorter guy like Onir if he wanted to, is doing this just for cheap publicity.
Says Onir, "I'm going to file a defamation case against Yuvraj as he's doing this only for cheap publicity. The encounter was completely mutual and I never promised him any work. I never said that I will give you work if you do this with me. My entire hard work of 15 years is being questioned because of this. I have always kept my sexuality out of my work. In my films I always say that gay people should not live with fear and here I am living all of that myself now. I am gay, but that's something sacred to me. I don't want to live in fear but this proves how hard it is to live with pride for those who are gay. What I don't understand is why this guy is doing this even for cheap publicity! He's also had some problem with UNDP when their name was used for his earlier movie "Dunno Y" and they also had trouble. Ask them about him... Also, is there any proof that I forced myself on him? He's such a big man, and I am five foot nothing. He could've pushed me away."
And now that Onir is contemplating legal action, Parashar says so is he. He says, "I just wanted him to see the film because he has made films on the issue. Somebody who was propagating the issue in cinema is exploiting newcomers in real life! I'll file a case against him. Main unke saath woh nahi karna chahta jo unhone mere saath kiya hai, par main yeh bhi nahi chahta ki aur log shikaar hon.''
Read more: Onir molested me: Yuvraj Parashar - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/entertainment/bollywood/news-interviews/Onir-molested-me-Yuvraj-Parashar/articleshow/7291529.cms#ixzz1BDs5pZsP