Mumbai, Aug 12 (IANS) Filmmaker Subhash Ghai reacted to the claims of actress Mahima Chaudhry that he had bullied her and had made her life stressful by sending out a message to all producers that nobody should work with her.
“I am amused reading this news. Mahima and I are very good friends till date and are still in touch through messages. She is a very nice and mature woman of today. She recently shared on how she gets welcomed at every event with a song from ‘Pardes’, ‘I love my India’, even after 23 years,” Ghai said in a statement issued through his publicist.
He admitted they had a small tiff in 1997.
“Yes, there was a small conflict in 1997 post the release of ‘Pardes’, which became a big blockbuster and for which she even got the Filmfare Award for best actor. My company did send her a showcause notice for flouting a clause in our agreement,” he added.
“Media and industry reacted in a big way and so I withdrew and cancelled her contract with Mukta (Ghai’s banner is Mukta Arts). After 3 years she came to me with her family and apologised for her impulsive reaction. I forgave her and thereafter we became friends again,” the filmmaker continued.
Ghai called Mahima a “jovial good person”, who he trusts.
“She must be right in feeling that she was bullied when asked by someone. Actually I admire her great gesture when she did a guest appearance in a song in my last film ‘Kanchi’ in 2015. I guess we do get entertained with the smallest of an old tiff which is normal in course of life in showbiz,” he added.
Mahima, who made her Bollywood debut with Ghai’s directorial “Pardes” 23 years ago in 1997, had earlier opened up to bollywoodhungama.com and shared that the filmmaker had “bullied” her.
She told the portal: “I was bullied by Mr. Subhash Ghai. He even took me to the court and wanted me to cancel my first show. It was quite stressful. He sent a message to all the producers that nobody should work with me! If you pick up one of the issues of Trade Guide magazine in 1998 or 1999, there was an ad that he had given which stated that if anybody wanted to work with me, that person would have to contact him.”
“Otherwise, it would be a breach of contract. However, there was no such contract which said that I had to seek his permission. Salman Khan, Sanjay Dutt, David Dhawan and Rajkumar Santoshi were the only four people who stood by me. They all told me to stay strong. David Dhawan called and told me that, ‘Don’t worry and don’t let him bully you.’ Apart from these four people, I didn’t receive a call from anyone else,” Mahima added.
She also claimed that she was signed by Ram Gopal Varma for “Satya” but two days before the shoot, she was “dropped out of the film”.
“That was supposed to be my second film. I had taken the signing amount. He didn’t even have the decency to call me or my manager and inform me about the reality. I learnt from the press that he had begun shooting without me,” said Mahima.
“I had already given interviews stating that I would be shooting for ‘Satya’ in a week. I and Ram Gopal Varma had even discussed the look,” she added.