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Wednesday 29 January 2020

Lawyer of Tanushree Dutta himself a #MeToo accused

A woman said she'd had an argument with this lawyer after which he abused her over the phone and in front of the women's commission office

Police registered a case of molestation on 3 January in Mumbai against the lawyer of film actress Tanushree Dutta. He allegedly used abusive language and molested a woman in Bandra according to Mumbai Police. Ironically, lawyer Nitin Satpute is fighting Nana Patekar on behalf of Tanushree Dutta in a case of molestation where the accuser has found few backers from the film trade.

The 47-year-old woman alleged that Satpute used abusive language in an incident outside the office of the Maharashtra Commission for Women earlier this week, a police officer said. In her complaint to the Kherwadi police station, the woman said that she had had an argument with this lawyer on 2 November over the construction of a garden for children. Satpute called the victim on her mobile phone and allegedly abused her, following which the victim lodged a complaint with the state women’s commission on 4 November.

The victim was then summoned to a meeting of the commission on Monday. While exiting the office, the lawyer came close to her and addressed her with derogatory words. Police on Thursday registered a case under Section 354A (sexual harassment) and other provisions of the Indian Penal Code, saying that the matter was being investigated.

Tanushree has accused film actor Nana of molesting her during the shooting of the film. This was roughly when #MeToo campaign started in India. However, Patekar denied all the allegations and took the matter to court.

#MeToo pushing someone to death

While many women named their former colleagues and bosses in the #MeToo campaign in 2018, the ‘movement’ fizzled out in the wake of several questionable and/or fake complaints. This has affected the careers of men and women alike, ending the political career of MJ Akbar, pushing journalist Gaurav Sawant to obscurity, hassling filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri, troubling then CJI Ranjan Gogoi for a few days, etc on the one hand and companies reporting they are wary of hiring women on the other. A few cases of suicide for defamation like that of a Genpact executive were also reported.

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