Oscar-winning director Jane Campion has filed a sexual harassment complaint for her treatment at the India International Women's Film Festival, according to the Times of India.
Campion and Pakistani director Ayesha Arif Khan allege they were harassed by Bhaskar Deb, the husband of the festival director.
Campion, who directed 'The Piano' and 'Bright Star' among others, wrote in her statement:
"I am not the only filmmaker to be badly treated. Many other women experienced rude and even lewd advances from the husband of the festival director and all felt shocked and angry that such a brazen fraud could be allowed to proceed unimpeded by the Indian authorities."
In her complaint letter, Campion described the December festival in New Delhi as a scandalous fraud that she only attended after being told it was backed by the Ministry of Urban Development. She also asks the ministry to refund her travel expenses, which amounted to $10,000.
Ayesha Khan complained that she was "repeatedly mauled by a drunken Bhaskar and constantly offered alcohol." She claims that Bhaskar and his friends repeatedly knocked on the door of her hotel room.
"I am asked thrice to give them company by various Bhaskar cronies knocking on my door," her letter reads. "It was the same show of extreme lechery and drunkenness."
Bhaskar has dismissed the allegations.
"Jane Campion is a racist from Australia," he said in a statement. "During the festival, she went to Jaipur without informing anyone. From Jaipur she flew to Australia directly and we came to know about this later. I have also filed a case against her. Her allegations are baseless."
Saugata Roy, the Minister of State for Urban Development, confirms the complaints. "We have received complaints from two women who attended the film festival, Jane Campion and Ayesha Khan," he told the Times of India. "The matter is now under investigation."
SUBSCRIBE AND FOLLOW
Get top stories and blog posts emailed to me each day. Newsletters may offer personalized content or advertisements.Learn more