Mumbai, April 6 : Puja Jatinder Bedi, set to release her directorial venture Mary Magdalene, has revealed facets about the life of convicted Bollywood actor Shiney Ahuja which show the latter in a poor light, reports Mumbai Mirror.
Bedi has alleged that the actor, jailed for seven years for the rape of his maid, was no shining example of good behaviour with women on the sets and even made a pass at her.
Bedi said he made her uncomfortable by insisting she accompany him to his room to discuss the film there. “He would call me in and send the rest of the unit out. He even tried to hug me a couple of times and I had to be firm in my refusal.”
Bedi said Shiney's co-star Sayali Bhagat had also complained that he made inappropriate comments on her clothes and looks on the sets.
“For a scene in a coffee shop, he told me he needed to hold hands with her for a while to feel the energy and warmth,” said Bedi, who has earlier been the line producer for films such as Saathiya and Mangal Pandey.
Sayali confirmed the incident. She said, “He held my hand, took me to a corner and talked about how he did the scenes with Kangna and Shilpa.
My mother stayed with me through the shooting because of his suspicious behaviour. He misbehaved with others, including Puja.”
Bedi said, “The day a crucial scene was being shot Shiney left without informing us and even left his driver behind. When we called him, he said he had taken his make-up woman to the hospital because she wasn't well.”
On the last day of the shoot, Shiney apparently disappeared with a 17-year-old who had a small role in the film. The director discovered this when the girl's mother called one of the assistant directors.
Shiney, who plays a detective in the horror film, allegedly even pushed Bedi when she asked him to get into his costume as it was getting late. Working with him was “mental molestation”, Bedi said.
He allegedly wasted a lot of time on the sets cosying up with his Russian co-star Julia. “He had to kiss her for a scene. But his wife Anupam called me and said it would affect his image. Soon after we shot the scene in a bikini, he invited her to his room for a drink.
This was followed by intimacy and childish banter on set,” she said. “Shiney would spend hours chatting up good-looking female extras.”
Bedi had decided to take a chance with Shiney after the actor cast earlier abandoned the film on the day of the Mahurat.
“We had been asked by a friend of Shiney's, who was out of jail and not doing anything, to meet him. He had not been convicted then and we gave him the benefit of doubt,” she said.
But he came to the sets two hours late on the very first day and left by afternoon.
“He said he had to rush back to Delhi to take care of legalities. But his lawyer had told him to mark his presence at Delhi Police station before the start of shoot.”
The film was shot on the outskirts of Mumbai.
“With his daily tantrums and attitude we were losing time and money. The film had gone over-budget by nearly a week, escalating costs by Rs 50 lakh.
He behaved unethically with us when we were giving him a chance to resurrect his career,” Bedi added.
Puja had no issues with Shiney's wife Anupam, who she said was ‘professional'. “We told her about his amorous ways but she didn't bother checking him. We asked her to stay on but she didn't,” Bedi said.