Aamir steps away from 'Mogul'

Aamir steps away from 'Mogul'

Aamir Khan. AFP/FILE

In a surprising development for the #MeToo movement, Bollywood actor Aamir Khan said he will not be part of the upcoming film Mogul after its director Subhash Kapoor was accused of sexual misconduct.

Mogul is the biopic of T-Series founder Gulshan Kumar, who was shot dead by the underworld two decades ago. He had founded the T-Series brand in the 1980s from the Super Cassettes Industries Private Ltd.

The 53-year-old Khan and his wife Kiran Rao issued a statement and announced their departure from the project though they did not name the film.

"... at Aamir Khan Productions we have always had a zero-tolerance policy towards sexual misconduct and predatory behaviour of any kind," the joint statement said, adding: "We believe that this is an opportunity for the film industry to introspect and take concrete steps towards change. For far too long women have faced the brunt of sexual exploitation. It has to stop."

Khan went on to say: "Two weeks ago, when traumatic #MeToo stories began emerging, it was brought to our attention that someone we were about to begin work with has been accused of sexual misconduct. Upon enquiry we found that this particular case is sub judice, and that the legal process is in motion," the statement read.

"So, without casting any aspersions on anyone involved in this case, and without coming to any conclusions about these specific allegations, we have decided to step away from this film. We do not want our action to reflect in any manner on the people involved in this case," it said.

Mogul's co-producer Bhushan Kumar later said that Kapoor, known for the Jolly LLB series, has been removed from the project.

"I understand and respect Aamir Khan's and Kiran Rao's decision. Since the matter is sub judice, I intend to prove my innocence in the court of law," Kapoor was quoted saying.

Actress Geetika Tyagi, who has appeared in films like One By Two, Aatma, What the Fish had accused Kapoor of molesting her.