Actor Akshay Kumar on Friday said he has requested the producers of Housefull 4 to halt the film's shoot, asserting that he will not work with any "proven offenders".
Housefull 4 is being directed by Sajid Khan and features actor Nana Patekar, both of whom have been accused of sexual harassment.
Stringent action should be taken against the offenders, Kumar said in a brief statement posted on Twitter.
"I've just landed back in the country last night and reading all the news has been very disturbing. I've requested the producers of Housefull 4 to cancel the shoot until further investigation," he wrote.
"This is something that requires stringent action. I will not work with any proven offenders and all those who have been subjugated to harassment should be heard and given the justice they deserve," the 51-year-old actor added.
Sajid Khan, the director of Housefull and Humshakals, and the brother of Farah Khan, was accused of sexual harassment by three women.
Assistant director Saloni Chopra wrote in a Medium post: "This goes back to 2011, when I had barely just moved to India properly and wanted to assist a director to learn more about film making, and my first ever experience, was the most awful experience of my life. Unfortunately, I was naive and had no idea how to handle it at the time. He [Sajid] was famous for his interview questions. He asks questions like ‘do you masturbate?’ and ‘how many times a week?’… he also asked me if I’d ever been sexually abused, I said yes. Then he asked weird questions like if I would ever get a breast job, and talked about how sex is really a mental connection."
"One night, it got really ugly. I was so tired of the calls and the constant harassment, I asked him what he wanted from me. I told him that if this was just about sex then fine, I’d come over right now and fuck him but provided he backed off afterwards and stopped calling me every day. I was so tired of his behaviour that even my fear of him wasn’t enough to shut me up. He started yelling at me and claimed that I was so naive and stupid if I thought this was just about sex. This wasn’t about sex, it was about me being his little bitch and doing everything he told me to do. He’d name directors that keep actresses at their homes for months and thats just how this works. He then said ‘you think I want to fuck you? I have such a hot girlfriend, why would I fuck a girl like you thats not even sexy?’ So I asked, almost pleading, what was it that he wanted from me? He said he wants me to do everything he tells me to. Stay with him. Maybe he’ll ask me to touch myself in front of him, maybe he’ll want to record it. He’ll do things to me and give me orgasm and teach me the art of sex but maybe he won’t actually put his dick inside me. Maybe he will."
Actress Rachel White had also tweeted about Sajid Khan's alleged misconduct. "He asks me to strip for him bcoz there were scenes in a bikini and he needed to see how I looked. I replied saying “there are pics of me in bikinis sent to u,I think that should good for u” n wen he insisted I said “I’m ready to parade ur office in a binkini nt at home," she wrote.
After that he asks me to strip for him bcoz there were scenes in a bikini and he needed to see how I looked. I replied saying “there are pics of me in bikinis sent to u,I think that should good for u” n wen he insisted I said “I’m ready to parade ur office in a binkini nt at home— Rachel White (@whitespeaking) October 11, 2018
Journalist Karishma Upadhyay also took to Twitter, levelling allegations against the director. She wrote: “The first time I interviewed Sajid Khan in the early 2000s, he called me to the house he shared w/ his sister. Thru the interview he talked about how large his penis is & how he knew how to satisfy a woman.”
-Inputs from PTI