Bollywood celebrity manager attempts suicide after #MeToo allegations

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Anirban Das Blah, who co-founded one of the biggest celebrity management agencies in India, attempted suicide after being accused of sexual harassment.

The co-founder of KWAN Entertainment, which has managed actors such as Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone in the past, was reportedly rescued by police from jumping off a bridge in Vashi. The police had received a tip-off that that he planned to commit suicide, according toThe Hindu.

Police said Anirban was climbing over the barricades of the bridge when they caught hold of him. “He was crying. He seemed very frustrated and depressed,” an official said.

The 39-year-old was asked to step down by Kwan earlier this week after he was accused of sexual harassment by multiple women on a #MeToo thread on social media.

“The past few days have been very disturbing to everyone in the light of the #MeToo movement and it has pushed us all to take a step back and introspect whether each of us is doing enough to create a healthy and safe environment,” the entertainment and marketing company said in a statement announcing that Anirban had been asked to quit.

“We fully support the #MeToo movement and deprecate and condemn those who have exploited women in any form or manner,” the statement said, assuring a “safe and secure” working environment for its employees.

India’s #Metoo movement has been gaining traction with several women calling out powerful men in government, Bollywood and the media.

The trigger appears to have been actress Tanushree Dutta, who accused well-known Bollywood actor Nana Patekar of inappropriate behaviour on a film set 10 years ago.

Since then a slew of popular Bollywood figures have been accused of sexual misconduct, including Vikas Bahl, Sajid Khan and Alok Nath. All have denied the claims.

On Wednesday India’s junior foreign minister MJ Akbar announced his resignation after at least 20 women accused him of sexual harassment during his time as a newspaper editor.

Akbar — who denies the allegations — is suing one of the complainants, Priya Ramani, for defamation. The first hearing in the case has been listed for October 31.

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