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Producer tried to exploit me: Actress

An actress accuses a producer of trying to exploit her sexually after he sues her, reports Megha Sood.

india Updated: Oct 26, 2006 22:35 IST
Megha Sood

In a twist in the tale, a Mumbai film producer who dragged a model and upcoming actor to court, was himself put in the line of fire when he was charged of sexually exploiting her.

On November 6, the Mumbai High Court will hear a case of clash between an actor and producer. Simran Sachdeva, a Delhi-based model, who had signed a film called My Husband’s Wife produced by Maa Shakti Entertainer and Jay Pictures of Vinod Chhabra backed out just before the shooting for the film started.

When Chhabra moved to the Bombay High Court to demand compensation worth Rs 48, 43, 600 lakhs for his losses due to her 'unprofessional behaviour,' she responded alleging that the producer had tried to sexually exploit her.

According to Chhabra, the actor backed out after she had signed a legal agreement and just 15 days before the shooting could begin and hadn’t given him any time to find a replacement.

Chhabra’s story goes this way: “I had been looking for a modern girl for one of the lead roles in my movie starring well-known actors. When I was introduced to Simran in Delhi I felt she could give full justice to the role.

"She agreed and I gave her the contract after telling her the story and explaining her role on August 8, this year. After a few days when she was satisfied with the contract she signed it agreeing to do my movie subject to the clauses.

"The only thing she asked me to change was the clause stating that she would not be able do any other film or television serial but since she had already got another offer for a film I changed the clause only restricting her to do television serials."

"The shoot was about to start in the first week of October, so I asked Simran for her dates as she played the main lead in the movie but she did not co-operate saying that she is acting in another film simultaneously and would not be able to give me the required dates so I adjusted and kept the shooting schedule matching her dates.

"On September 29, she sent me an SMS saying that she had showed the agreement to her parents and they did not approve of some clauses of the agreement regarding some vulgar scenes in the movie and rejected to do the film,” he added.

Chhabra claims that he had incurred heavy losses as the set was worth lakhs of rupees was already put up and due to Simran’s attitude, he had to stop the shooting. “I approached the court on October 14, demanding the compensation for the losses, I had to suffer just because of her and for ruining my reputation.”

Meanwhile, Sachdeva responded to the notice saying that the agreement between them was fraudulent, unfair, and unduly restrictive and in restraint of her right to act in other projects and also accused Chhabra of sexually exploiting her.

"According to the agreement the script demanded just a few vulgar scenes but when the script actually came in my hands after a long delay there were more vulgar scenes which I did not approve of.

"Secondly, when I had already signed the film, the producer asked to compromise with the co-producer and even tried to sexually exploit me.

"I was strictly against the conditions put before me and so I backed out. Moreover, Chhabra had also threatened me that he would ruin my career by damaging my reputation," said Simran.

"I am a professional artist and would not compromise my talent at any cost," she added.

First Published: Oct 26, 2006 22:00 IST