Jane Campion Wasn't Sexually Harassed In Delhi

Oscar winning New Zealand filmmaker Jane Campion has blasted reports that she was sexually harassed in India during her stay here last year.

"I was not sexually harassed by the festival director's husband and did not make that allegation, " she said in a statement Wednesday.

"However at least two other delegates I spoke to and a third I heard about, did have bad experiences with the festival director's husband and I hear they went on to make allegations of sexual harassment, " she added.

A leading daily reported Tuesday that Campion, who won an Oscar in 1993 for her screenplay for "The Piano" and Pakistani filmmaker Ayesha Arif Khan complained to the Ministry of Urban Development here of sexual harassment during their stay in the capital, reports nzherald.co.nz.

Reports suggested that they accused Bhaskar Deb, husband of Festival Director Shyamali Banerjee, of making lewd advances and harassing them during their stay here during the 5th India International Women's film Festival here Dec 15-22 last year.

"At parties, Bhaskar would get really drunk and obnoxious and that is not the objective of any director's visit to India, " Khan had said to a news channel.

"I am trying to raise it as a feminist representation issue and it's very sad that we are female filmmakers and we have been treated like this by the organisers of the film festival, " she added.

The two female filmmakers also claimed that they were forced to leave in haste after they discovered that the fest was fraudulent.

Bhaskar Deb claimed that the allegations against him are baseless.

"I'm not well versed in English or Hindi. How can I speak to a foreign filmmaker? I haven't seen Jane Campion at the festival. She was in the country but didn't attend the event, " he told a news channel here.

"Ayesha was here for three-four days after she made the allegations. She even mingled with my family. Why is she making such statements now?" he asked.

Banerjee also spoke in her husband's defence.

"It's all a conspiracy. Since their aspirations are high which could not be fulfilled so they are trying to damage our festival in this way, " she said.