Former Editor And Minister MJ Akbar Accused Of Sexual Harassment By Journalist

| October 9 , 2018 , 11:09 IST

Founder of the national first weekly political news magazine, Sunday as well as 2 daily newspapers The Telegraph and The Asian Age, M J Akbar, currently the Minister of State for External Affairs, has landed in trouble after 3 women journalists on Monday accused him of sexual harassment.

As the 'MeToo' movement in India gains momentum, especially in the film industry after actress Tanushree Dutta came forward with allegations against Nana Patekar, journalist Priya Ramani revealed on Twitter that the anonymous 'male boss' she had accused of sexual harassment in October 2017, was M J Akbar. As Priya went public with her allegations, 2 other women journalists claimed that Akbar had used the same Modus Operandi with them as well to sexually harass them.

Priya, naming M J Akbar as the 'male boss' who sexually harassed her, tweeted, "I began this piece with my MJ Akbar story. Never named him because he didn’t “do” anything. Lots of women have worse stories about this predator—maybe they’ll share."

In the article titled "To the Harvey Weinsteins of the world" published on October 12, 2017 on Vogue India, Priya describes how she was called to the hotel room of her 'professional hero' for an interview at 7 PM.

"Turns out you were as talented a predator as you were a writer. It was more date, less interview. You offered me a drink from the mini bar (I refused, you drank vodka), we sat on a small table for two that overlooked the Queen’s Necklace (how romantic!) and you sang me old Hindi songs after inquiring after my musical preferences. You thought you were irresistible," wrote Priya.

ALSO READ: Bollywood Actress Tanushree Dutta Files FIR Against Nana Patekar Alleging Sexual Assault

"You’re an expert on obscene phone calls, texts, inappropriate compliments and not taking no for an answer. You know how to pinch, pat, rub, grab and assault. Speaking up against you still carries a heavy price that many young women cannot afford to pay. Sometimes you are inconvenienced when the stories get out and you are asked to take a time out. Often, you are quickly reinstated," Priya alleged.

Another woman on Twitter responded to Priya, revealing that she had a similar encounter in 1995 in Kolkata, after which she declined the job offer.