Madhur Bhandarkar’s judgment day seemed to be a scene straight out of one of his films.
“I was standing at a little distance from the place where the proceeding was going on, so I did not hear the judgment clearly. When people started dispersing, my lawyer came up to me and said that the court has quashed the charges. I did not know what to say, how to react, I was shocked … I had become numb and tears rolled down my cheeks,” he told us, describing his emotions as the Supreme Court dropped rape charges against the filmmaker on Monday.
“As everyone was looking at me, I went to an isolated corner and wept for two minutes, which gave me immense relief. My family and I’ve gone through this for more than eight years now,” said Bhandarkar, referring to what he’s had to face ever since starlet Preeti Jain accused him of casting couch.
“I was told my career is finished and I have no way to go, but I decided to deal with it strongly, and the result is for all to see. I made good films, won a National Award, gained respect in the industry, worked with the biggest stars and finally came out victorious,” he said.
A free man now
The Supreme Court on Monday quashed the rape case filed against Madhur Bhandarkar by starlet Preeti Jain eight years ago. Jain alleged that Bhandarkar had raped her 16 times between 1999 and 2004, with a promise to cast her in his films.
The Case Timeline
Filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar
Preeti Jain had lodged a complaint against Madhur Bhandarkar claiming that he had raped her several times between 1999 and 2004 under the pretext of marrying her and casting her as actress in his movies.
September 2011: A Mumbai metropolitan court had found substance in Jain's complaint, and issued processes against Bhandarkar, directing him to face the trial.
November 2011: The magistrate court had granted anticipatory bail to the Bollywood filmmaker in the case.
March 2012: The Bombay High Court on Thursday rejected the application of filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar to stay the process against him in a Mumbai metropolitan court in the Preeti Jain rape case.
Following the Bombay high court’s rejection, Bhandarkar decided to move the Supreme Court seeking relief in the alleged rape case filed by Preeti Jain.