The National Commission for Women had issued notices to Mahesh Bhatt along with other Bollywood celebrities like Mouni Roy, Urvashi Rautela, Rannvijay Singha and Prince Narula for allegedly promoting a modelling firm named IMG ventures, which has been accused of exploiting girls in a sexual abuse case.
A social activist Yogita Bhayana had first filed the complaint on 15 July where she accused a person named Sunny Verma, promoter of IMG Ventures, for duping and exploiting young girls who aspire to work in the modelling and movie industry.
On Tuesday, Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt appeared before the NCW and also clarified the allegations in an official statement. The statement was shared on Vishesh Films' official Instagram page.
Read Mahesh Bhatt’s stance on the sexual abuse case here:
I salute the National Commission for Women for taking up the noble cause of whistleblowing the vulnerability and exploitation of women by few miscreants who bring shame and disgrace to the entire industry.
I appeared before the Hon'ble Commission today in context of the complaint filed by M Yogita Bhayana, Founder of People against Rapes in India against Mr. Sunny Verma, promoter of the company IMG Ventures. I was summoned to appear as my name and images were used by IMG Ventures for promotion of their event Mr. and Miss. Glamour 2020, scheduled to be held in November, 2020.
I clarified to the Hon'ble Chairperson that while I was approached to attend this event as a Chief Guest, I had responded that in the current COVID 19 circumstances, I would not attend any event. I could give it a thought closer to November, depending on the circumstances at the relevant time. I have neither entered into an agreement nor received any monetary consideration for the event. Unfortunately, my name and images were picked up from social media and misused in relation to the event without my consent and authority. When I confronted them on this, they have apologized profusely and withdrawn all my images in association with the event.
I am issuing this statement to make everyone aware that I have no association with IMG Ventures, Sunny Verma and Mr.and Miss. Glamour 2020 and my name and credibility should not be misused for promotion of the event to lure participation of others.
I am 71 years of age and at this age, I believe in sharing knowledge and support social causes.
As a father of three girls, I have the highest regard for the cause taken up by Ms. Yogita and the National Commission for Women and express my full cooperation for the crusade.
Sd/- Mahesh Bhatt.