POSH Committee finds Taarak Mehta… producer Asit Modi guilty of sexually harassing Jennifer Mistry

POSH Committee finds Taarak Mehta… producer Asit Modi guilty of sexually harassing Jennifer Mistry

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Disgraced producer asked to clear actor’s dues with 10% interest, plus ordered to pay Rs5 lakh as compensation. Mistry, though, will move Mumbai High Court seeking stringent punishment and fair compensation.

Asit Modi, Jennifer Mistry

By IndiaLevel Media

Noted television actor Jennifer Mistry stands vindicated after a POSH [Prevention of Sexual Harassment] Committee found producer Asit Kumarr Modi guilty of sexually harassing her. Though this verdict can’t send him to jail, a five-member Committee ordered the Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah producer to clear her dues with 10 % interest, plus a compensation of Rs5 lakh.

After struggling to find much help from the local police, Mistry had knocked on the doors of the state Local Complaints Committee, which then formed a POSH committee, comprising of four women and one man, to probe her serious allegations of sexual misconduct. 

Speaking to IndiaLevel Insights, Mistry said, “I’m very thankful to the POSH committee for their swift action inside four months after I’d approached them in September last year. They passed the order in February this year.”

The actress revealed that through the four months, the Committee efficiently conducted their probe, even got Modi and her to confront each other, before concluding that the accused had committed an offence under Section 2 (n) sub-clause (iii) and (v) of  the Sexual Harassment of Women At Workplace [Prevention, Prohibition, Redressal] Act of 2012.

Though a favourable verdict, Mistry will move Bombay High Court seeking fair compensation, and stringent punishment against the producer.

“Whilst I welcome the order, there has to be action taken against him. I’m told this committee isn’t empowered to issue jail sentences. It’s been a harrowing phase for me wherein I’ve suffered both mentally, financially. I even harbored suicidal thoughts. I’ll move High Court seeking stringent punishment against him and others,” said Mistry.

Mistry has got no work from the time she had filed a complaint against the Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah producer. The actor had accused Modi of sexual misconduct during Holi celebrations on 7 April, 2023. She’d filed a complaint next day but nothing happened until she approached the Local Complaints Committee in September.

The actor was left hurt as to how certain production personnel treated her after she raised a stink over Modi’s conduct.

Mistry recalls, “I want action to be taken against [operations head] Sohil Ramani too. After I’d complained against Modi, he shouted at me, telling me that I’d be replaced soon. Jatin Bajaj, [Executive Producer] didn’t allow me to leave my room and closed the gate. Well, isn’t this akin to kidnapping?”

For 15 years, the actor played the popular character of Roshan Sodhi before quitting it last year. Mistry itirated that Modi has a history of sexual misconduct, especially targeting junior artistes. However, prior to her complaint, no one took action against him. She’d moved Cine & TV Artistes’ Association, too, but didn’t get any positive result.

Having taken legal recourse, CINTAA couldn’t probe her sexual harassment allegation, but she is disappointed that till date, CINTAA couldn’t even get her dues cleared. According to Mistry, Modi owes her Rs18.5 lakhs.

With the POSH committee ruling in her favour, Mistry can hope to find justice in Bombay Court too.

POSH Committee finds Taarak Mehta… producer Asit Modi guilty of sexually harassing Jennifer Mistry

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