Bollywood Roundup: Madhoo Shah, Radhika Apte, Varun Sood, and more…

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Radhika Apte (Photo: Twitter)

Women now empowered, not ashamed to speak up: Madhoo Shah

Mumbai– Actress Madhoo Shah says Indian society has evolved to accept harsh realities of the working environment for women, who are more empowered than ever to speak up about their sour experiences.

Madhoo Shah (Photo: Wikipedia)

Madhoo was interacting with the media at #IBelieve charity gala fundraiser event for underprivileged cancer patients here along with Jackie Shroff, Boman Irani, Aamir Ali Khan and Sanjeeda Sheikh on Wednesday.

Talking about the #MeToo movement that has gained momentum in India, the “Roja” actress said: “Today, we have changed as a society. If such incidents would have happened with us when we were working in film industry then, we all would have kept it quiet.

“At that time, if we had to talk about this issue, then we would have felt ashamed. But today, women are feeling empowered and not feeling ashamed to talk about their issues. I am very happy that we have reached this far as a society.”

She said she has not experienced sexual harassment in her life.

“I don’t have my #MeToo story, but I am proud and happy to support all girls because we have to stand together. It requires great courage to come out and as a society, we have definitely evolved to be able to accept harsh realities of working environment for women.”

I fully support #MeToo campaign: Radhika Apte

Mumbai– Actress Radhika Apte expressed her full support to the sexual harassment survivors, who are calling out their alleged tormentors under the #MeToo campaign.

Radhika Apte (Photo: Facebook)

While interacting with the media at the launch of new collection of Daniel Wellington watches as their brand ambassador, Radhika on Wednesday hoped that the film industry would come up with an “equal and genderless” system to tackle any kind of harassment cases.

Radhika has been associated with Kwan Entertainment — one of the biggest celebrity management agencies in India — whose founder has been sacked after four aspiring actresses anonymously accused him of seeking sexual favours.

Asked whether she will disassociate herself with the celebrity management agency, Radhika said: “I am completely and closely in contact with them. The people who are associated with Kwan have helped me and I have a great relationship with them. They are taking all required action as we all support the (#MeToo) movement.”

Varun Sood joins ‘MTV Ace of Space’

Mumbai– Popular video jockey Varun Sood will be showing his mental strength by participating in reality show “MTV Ace of Space”.

Varun Sood (Photo: Twitter)

Divya Agarwal will also participate in the show along with Riya Subodh (“India’s Next Top Model” season three winner), Akanksha Sharma (Yuvraj Singh’s former sister-in-law), Omprakash Mehra (popular for his show “Aunty ki ghanti”), read a statement.

Television show producer and former “Bigg Boss” contestant Vikas Gupta will play with the minds of contestants of the show.

Premiering on MTV on October 20, the contestants will fight it out not to win money or hearts, but to win the most basic means of existence — space.

The interesting element added to the show is ‘The Mastermind’. He will have everyone in sight with the authority to monitor and outplay the contestants with no rules and regulations. That mastermind will be Gupta.

In fact, there are speculations that actress Sara Khan can also enter the show. There is no confirmation on that front at the moment.

MeToo allegations against Anu Malik false, baseless: Lawyer

Mumbai– Singer Anu Malik has denied allegations that he sexually harassed singer Shweta Pandit, who has called him a “pedophile” and “sexual predator”.

Anu Malik

“The allegations made against my client are emphatically denied as completely false and baseless. My client respects the #MeToo movement but to use this movement to start a character assassination mission is obnoxious,” Malik’s lawyer Zulfiquar Memon told IANS.

Pandit, in a Twitter post, recounted her ordeal with Malik in an incident dating back to 2000. She claims once in a cabin at a studio, he told her he would give her a song with Sunidhi Chauhan and Shaan “but first give me a kiss now”.

“He then smiled, what I would recall the most evil grin I’ve seen,” Pandit said of the incident when she was all of 15 years old.

Before Shweta, singer Sona Mohapatra called out Malik.

Transgender community deserves acceptance: Ashish Sharma

Mumbai– Television actor Ashish Sharma, who has played a transgender in a feature film titled “Khejdi”, has urged society not to be discriminatory against the community.

Ashish Sharma (Photo: Twitter)

“Since childhood, we have been told to stay away from transgenders. Whenever we encounter trans people, we get afraid of them. Why? It’s all because of our upbringing.

“We all should realise that they are also human beings, they also deserve love, care and acceptance,” the 34-year-old actor told IANS over phone from Mumbai.

“Khejdi” is an adaptation of a short story “Sanjha” and has been penned and produced by him and his wife Archana Taide.

After getting screened at Kashish International Mumbai Queer Film Festival, the film also opened Germany’s Homochrom Film Festival on Tuesday.

Humbled by the response, Ashish said: “I worked for more than two years on this film and now the movie is doing so great. I feel blessed, and it feels great to see my work getting appreciated at international platforms.”

For Ashish, “Khejdi” is a milestone project as by doing the film, he feels he has improved not only as an actor but also as an individual.

Harsh Rajput’s action hero dreams

Mumbai– Actor Harsh Rajput says it’s been his childhood dream to be an action hero and that he looks up to Bollywood star Akshay Kumar.

Harsh Rajput (Photo: Twitter)

“It was my childhood dream to become an action hero. Akshay Kumar has been a huge inspiration to me, not only as an actor, but also for his effortless and excellent performance of stunts,” Harsh said in a statement.

“It is remarkable that he performs his own stunts and this encouraged me to come out of my comfort zone and try my hand at performing stunts and doing action sequences.”

In the upcoming sequence of “Nazar”, the audience will get to see Ansh (Harsh) doing stunts to win the supernatural fight over ‘daayan’.

For the sequence, he watched Akshay’s movies like “Khiladi 420” and “Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi”.

Harsh is also a huge fan of the supernatural genre.

“It opens doors to try something new and exciting instead of the ‘saas-bahu’ dramas. Also, for a short period of time, people can escape from reality,” he said. (IANS)

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