Dileep just one in film industry's assault diary
Malayalam actor Dileep's arrest in connection with the alleged abduction and rape of an actress lays bare the seamy underbelly of a glamour industry of starry haves and many have nots caught in tinsel traps.
But Dileep is not the only one. From Bollywood director Madhur Bhandarkar to actor Shiney Ahuja, many celebrities have been named in similar cases alleging sexual harassment and assault. Some have been proved and others disproved.
Though few talk about the casting couch syndrome, the dark reality behind the glittering lights of showbiz, actors like Ranveer Singh and Ayushmann Khurrana have opened up about their experiences.
A sting operation in 2005 saw Shakti Kapoor and Aman Verma asking an undercover reporter sexual favours in exchange for a career.
The film industry's diary of charges of sexual abuse is long.
In January this year, a case was filed against "Chennai Express" producer Karim Morani after a 25-year-old woman alleged he had raped her on multiple occasions in Mumbai and had promised to marry her.
Shiney Ahuja was on his way to becoming the next big thing in Bollywood with his brooding turn in films such as "Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi" and "Gangster" but it all went south when his maid accused him of rape in 2009. She later retracted her charge but the trial court judge refused to accept it and convicted Ahuja based on circumstantial evidence. A fast track court sentenced Ahuja to seven years' rigorous imprisonment in 2011. His appeal is pending in the Bombay High Court.
"Peepli Live" co-director Mahmood Farooqui has also been convicted and sentenced for seven years for the rape of an American scholar from Columbia University in 2015. Farooqui said he was falsely implicated. His wife, director Anusha Rizvi, is fighting the case.