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Abhinav Kashyap levels serious charges, says Salman Khan and family sabotaged his projects

The Dabangg (2010) director also pointed a finger at the YRF talent agency and said it is detrimental to the interests of struggling artistes in the industry.

Shriram Iyengar

After actress Kangana Ranaut took to Instagram yesterday blaming the Hindi film industry for allegedly pushing Sushant Singh Rajput towards depression and suicide, filmmaker Abhinav Kashyap has, in a scathing attack, blamed some heavyweights in the industry of trying to sabotage his work.

The Dabangg (2010) director trained his guns on the YRF (Yash Raj Films) Talent Management Agency and on Dabangg star Salman Khan as two major powers he knows who control people in the industry.

In a long Facebook post, Kashyap appealed to the government to launch a 'detailed investigation' into the death of Sushant Singh Rajput.

'The suicide of Sushant Singh Rajput brings to the forefront a much bigger problem of what many of us have been dealing with,' Kashyap wrote. 'Exactly what might compel a person to commit suicide? I fear his death is just the tip of the iceberg just like the #MeToo movement was for a much bigger malaise in Bollywood.'

While an investigation is already underway to determine the exact cause and nature of Rajput's death, Kashyap seemed to imply that powerful cliques in the Hindi film industry could be a major reason.

Training his guns on the YRF talent agency, he wrote, '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.'

The director said these agencies are exploitative and explained, 'Once the talent is signed up with the talent management agency, they give up their right to exercise free choice and their discretion in any matter concerning career and they are made to work as bonded labour with very little money. Even if they are brave and manage to escape the clutches of their talent management agency somehow, they are systematically boycotted and their name smeared till they jump ship to another agency in the hope of a better tomorrow.'

Kashyap described his own experiences and called out Arbaaz Khan, Sohail Khan and Salman Khan in particular. He said, 'Arbaaz Khan on Dabangg and ever since. So here is my story 10 years after Dabangg. The reason I moved out of making Dabangg 2 ten years ago is that Arbaaz Khan in collusion with Sohail Khan and family was trying to take control of my career by bullying me.'

Kashyap made his directorial debut with the Salman Khan blockbuster Dabangg (2010), which gave birth to a successful series. While Arbaaz Khan and Kashyap fell out over the sequel Dabanng 2, they reportedly patched up their differences in 2012.

In his post now, Kashyap accused the family of sabotaging his projects with other producers, and also accused them of sending ''threats'' on the phone. 'Over the next few years, all my projects and creative endeavours have been sabotaged and I have been repeatedly threatened with life and rape threats given to/for the female members of my family,' he wrote in his Facebook post.

'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.

'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.'

The director said he refused to be ''cowed down'' and ''will fight on till I see the end of either them or me". 

Kashyap followed up his explosive post with an explanation saying, 'To those who are asking why I have not taken the names of others in the Bandra cartel, well, I have heard many more exploitation stories in Bollywood but have no personal grudges against anyone except the Khans.'

Incidentally, actor-filmmaker Farhan Akhtar shared a poem on his Instagram page which paid tribute to Sushant Singh Rajput while remarking about 'vultures' and 'weeping crocodiles', a remark about the hypocritical grief being expressed by some members of the film industry.


Gone too soon.

A post shared by Farhan Akhtar (@faroutakhtar) on

Actor Saif Ali Khan, in an interview with The Times of India newspaper, also hit out at the "hypocrisy" of love for Sushant Singh Rajput from people who ''obviously didn't care''. Saif Ali Khan said, "There are so many people who have made comments so quickly. And it just seems to me that people are somewhere gaining some mileage from this poor fellow's tragedy, whether it's to show compassion or to show interest or to show some political stance. So many people are talking rubbish in this nonstop barrage on social media and it's just embarrassing."

The actor added, "Yes! I mean, we don't care about anybody. You know, it's a very cutthroat line of work. But to pretend that you do care is like the ultimate hypocrisy and I think that's an insult to the dead; it's an insult to the soul that's gone. The least we can do is just have some introspection, you know, maybe some silence."