Abhinav Singh Kashyap, director of Salman Khan starrer 2010 film Dabangg, took to Facebook to narrate his own bullying experience in Bollywood and appealed for a detailed investigation in Sushant Singh Rajput’s death. Kashyap said that the role of YRF talent management agency, a division of Yash Raj Films, comes under scanner and alleged that they may have played a role and pushed him over the edge to commit suicide. “These people don’t make careers. They ruin your career and life. Having suffered personally for a decade, I can confidently say every Talent Manager and all Talent Management Agencies of Bollywood are a potential death Trap for Artists,” he writes in his Facebook post.
Saying that Rajput’s death may just be the tip of the iceberg and may bring a wave of ‘#MeToo’ like movement exposing bullying and exploitation in Bollywood, Kashyap added how the talent management agencies in Mumbai scout for talent from small towns and lure them with the glamorous make-believe world of Bollywood. “The talent is then lured with free invites to Bollywood parties and random Restaurant launches on the pretext of introducing them to celebrities. The Blinding glamour of celebs and lure of easy money is unleashed on the unsuspecting. Mind you they are all ignored and treated very badly at these parties so they feel demoralized and their self-confidence breaks,” he says.
Kashyap further added how after the confidence of the newbie is broken, the talent management agencies offer them exclusive multi-year contract at very low rates. “Over a period of few years, mostly the prime of any actor, the talent is repeatedly broken till they either commit suicide or they succumb to Prostitution and escort services (Yes male escorts also) to feed the ego and sexual appetite of the rich and powerful, not just in Bollywood but also in Corporate world and politics,” he adds.
Elaborating about his experience during his directional debut Dabangg, Kashyap said, “The reason I moved out of making Dabangg 2 ten years ago is because Arbaaz Khan in collusion with Sohail Khan and family was trying to take control of my career by bullying me. Arbaaz Khan sabotaged my second project with Shree Ashtavinayak Films that I was signed up with by personally calling their head Mr. Raj Mehta and threatening him with dire consequences if they made a film with me,” he writes. Kashyap says he returned the signing money to Shree Ashtavinayak Films and joined Viacom Pictures and alleged that Arbaz Khan and Salman Khan’s brother Sohail Khan intimidated the then Viacom CEO Vikram Malhotra.
“My project was sabotaged and I was made to return my signing fee of Rupees 7 Crores plus interest of Ninety odd lacs. Its only then that Reliance Entertainment came to my rescue and we forged an enduring partnership for my film Besharam,” he writes. However, it was then Salman Khan and family that sabotaged the film, he alleges. “Mr. Salman Khan and family sabotaged the release of the film and got their PROs to run a sustained negative smear campaign against me and my film BESHARAM before release. This scared the distributors from buying my film,” he writes. He further accuses the Khan family of trying to sabotage the satellite release of the film Besharam.
“Over the next few years, all my projects and creative endeavors have been sabotaged and I have been repeatedly threatened with life and rape threats given to/for the female members of my family. The sustained gaslighting and bullying destroyed my mental health and that of my family and led to my divorce and breaking up of my family in 2017,” he says. Elaborating on the threats, Kashyap says, “They erred and sent some of these threats as texts, sent to me as sms from several numbers. Armed with evidence, I went to the police in 2017 to file an FIR which they refused to register but registered a non-cognizable complaint. When the threats continued, I forced the police to trace the numbers but they couldn’t be traced back to Sohail Khan(the suspected sender). My complaint remains open to date and I still have all the evidence.”
“My enemies are sharp, cunning and always attack me from the back and stay Hidden. But the best part is after 10 years, I know who my enemies are. Let it be known that they are Salim Khan, Salman Khan, Arbaaz Khan and Sohail Khan. There are many other small fry’s but Salman Khan family is the head of this venomous serpent. They use a clever mix of their ill-gotten money, political clout and connections with the underworld to intimidate anyone and everyone,” Kashyap reveals.
“I refuse to cow down and will fight on till I see the end of either them or me. Enough tolerance. It’s time to fight back,” he challenged, saying that he will make sure no other innocent person will kill himself over lack of work with dignity in Bollywood.
In another post which he shared a couple of hours after his original post, he said that while there are other such cartels in Bollywood who exploit people, he chose to name the Khans because it was personal to him.
“This is my own struggle against the Salman Khan family and I alone am enough to take these guys on.Yes.. I will never commit suicide but should anything untoward happen to me.. By now the country knows who to blame… Treat this as my police statement,” he wrote.