In the light of the ongoing #MeToo movement in India, many victims are stepping forward and are exposing their sexual predators. Recently, a model named Kawaljit Singh Anand came out and shared his story. He accused fashion designer Vijay Arora of sexual harassment and exploitation.
He took to his Facebook handle to share the details of what had exactly happened. Here's what his post reads,
"So here I start to speak up for the boys who did not give in to the diseased system of the Indian fashion industry and hence lost jobs. I have a couple of people to talk about, with infallible egos, who could not take no for an answer.
But before that, I need to share one of the proofs of loss of opportunity. Kindly go through the link below to an article which clearly states that I was selected for the Men's fashion week 2009 after I went for an audition, I had to go for an audition even after being a well-established face and name in advertising and in fashion to some extent as that's was the only way I had since I never had a Godfather in the industry .
And guess what even after a confirmation by an article the next day (dated 24th August 2009) in Times of India I wasn't called for the job. This was being done to me for the 2nd time when I would clear the audition and my name would be removed later.
In 2006 a Delhi based designer told the panel openly when I went for the Lakme India fashion week Audition that neither he will use me for his show nor let any of his other friends use me for theirs so what's the point having my name in the final list. The name of the designer is Mr. Vijay Arora and two of the panelists who are also big names in fashion told me this, they both will read this and if they allow I can take their names as I know their intent was to do a fair job but they were under pressure.
All this because I had pushed him away when he was trying to touch me inappropriately outside a party venue and while I was walking away angrily he told me categorically that he will make sure I never do any of the fashion weeks. He sent me nasty messages when I got in touch with him later to ask for my payment for a show that I had done for him a little while before the incident. He sent me abusive messages and in 2002 told me that he will be having a stronger hold on the selection panel and will make sure that I never get to walk for LIFW. This is after being an official model in LIFW 2001 however over the years I did walk for it for individual designers. It's so malicious of him to not let go of his vicious agenda towards harming my career.
So here comes the first name and it will only go bigger from here. Such, and even more grave incidents are common in the Indian fashion and modeling industry and I would like other boys to come out too with their stories. I am not stopping here I need to clear this junk as I am moving into my new life and career.. #metoo #mentoo #metooindia''
He in his post has urged the other victims of the fashion industry too to stand up and unmask their exploiters.
Recently, in an exclusive conversation with Republic TV, model-actor Milind Soman spoke about the existence of sexual harassment and exploitation and said it exists in the fashion industry. He did not suffer a #MeToo incident but surely knows that it is prevalent in the fashion industry.
When asked about if he experienced an uncomfortable encounter himself, he said, "Not really because when I started modeling, of course, everybody today talks about casting couch concept in films and fashion as well but when I started, fashion was such a new industry that all of us were starting out together so there was no position of power or something like that could encourage this kind of an incident. For me, I was never subjected to this but I know it exists because people talk to me about it."
He further went on to talk about how even men face similar situations and that it needs to be brought to light.
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