After actor-singer Meesha Shafi accused singer-turned-actor Ali Zafar of sexual harassment, the latter had filed a defamation lawsuit against Shafi. On Wednesday, October 17, Shafi while replying to the defamation suit, reiterated that she was sexually harassed by the actor more than twice. Reportedly, Shafi’s legal team revealed that the actress has denied all allegations of slander made by Zafar in his notice. As per reports, Ahmed Pansota from Meesha's legal team has claimed that the actress has spoken the truth and hence it was her right under the law to file a complaint against Ali Zafar. The lawyer also stated that they are sure to prove the allegations with evidence.
In the month of April, long before the #MeToo movement hit India, Pakistani actress and singer Meesha Shafi, in an elaborate post on Twitter, narrated how she was sexually harassed by Ali Zafar on multiple occasions. In a photo uploaded on Twitter, she wrote, “I have been subjected to sexual harassment of a physical nature at the hands of a colleague from my industry: Ali Zafar. These incidences did not happen when I was young or just entering the industry. This happened to me despite the fact that I am an empowered, accomplished woman who is known for speaking her mind! This happened to me as a mother of two children.”
She also mentioned that this has been a very traumatic experience for her and her family. “Ali is someone I have known for many years and someone I shared the stage with. I feel betrayed by his behaviour and his attitude and I know that I am not alone.”
Post her accusation, several women came forward accusing him of sexual harassment. In response to Shafi ’s claims, Zafar took to Twitter and stated that he is aware of the #MeToo movement that has encouraged women to share their horrific stories. He wrote, “I categorically deny any and all claims of harassment lodged against me by Ms. Shafi. I intend to take this through the courts of law and to address this professionally and seriously, rather than to lodge any allegations here.”
He also added that he would not like to “contest vendetta on social media” and disrespect the movement, his family, the media industry and his fans. Reportedly, the next hearing of the case is scheduled for November 5, 2018.