As filmmaker Sajid Khan, a MeToo accused, joined the Salman Khan-hosted reality show Bigg Boss 16 yesterday, he received an endorsement that hit the audience like a bolt. Actress Shehnaaz Gill aka Sana asked Sajid to stay humble during the show, entertain the audience and avoid indulging in fights. “Meri support aapke sath hai. All the best! Rock it brother!,” said Shehnaaz in the video clip.
Sajid responded by telling Salman that Shehnaaz was like a “younger sister” to him and he believed that she would be a superstar in the industry.
Shehnaaz’s support for Sajid didn’t go down well with the viewers.
The filmmaker’s was one of the celebrity names that had surfaced during the ‘MeToo’ campaign by feminists in 2018 after several women in the entertainment industry accused him of molestation. Unlike many cases where women chose to stay quiet for more than 20 years for the sake of their careers, the alleged victims of Sajid Khan — Paula, Saloni Chopra, Rachel White, Aahana Kumra, Mandana Karimi and television journalist Karishma Upadhyay —spoke out against him not long after his objectionable acts.
The so-called movement jeopardised the careers of many men, a few of whom committed suicide, unable to bear with the ignominy or defamation, while the problem of sexual harassment of women at workplaces remains unaddressed at the social level, notwithstanding the Posh rules implemented in most offices.
While some netizens were unhappy to see Sajid joining other contestants, they slammed Shehnaaz for openly supporting the 'MeToo accused' on a public platform.
"The lowest point of today’s premiere was Shehnaaz Gill coming out in full support of Sajid Khan. Extremely disappointing!" wrote Rachit Mehra.
"Can't believe how Sajid Khan is being portrayed as a hero. His participation is understandable but at least not this way. And then getting Shehnaaz Gill to just get him some support. Chi!" Sana Gareeb wrote.
"Shehnaaz Gill supporting him just because he offered her a film. Shame on her," wrote another Twitter user.
"Just for sake of creating network in Bollywood, Shehnaaz became Sajid Khan sister… Tributes se publicity liya thik hai, lekin ek Woman ho ke dusre woman ka dard nahin samajhna… New low," tweeted yet another user.
Known for nonsensical flops like Heyy Babyy, Housefull, Humshakals etc., Sajid Khan didn’t come up with any new projects for quite a few years following the ‘MeToo’ controversy.
While chatting with Salman on stage, Sajid said that his purpose of coming on the show was to reconnect with the audience.