Top Bollywood actors have hit out at India TV for its casting couch expose through actor Shakti Kapoor,
calling the hidden camera techniques used by the channel "heinous" and "full of wrong
"I am troubled by such exposes," said actor Ajay Devgan. "Here you have a woman who has been calling an actor offering sex for not one or two days but six months. And then, when the man relents, it's shown as a big expose.
"There is something hypocritical in all this," said Ajay, who was in Delhi with fellow actors Salman Khan and Jackie Shroff for the opening of Bollywood designer Anna Singh's new line at the Kimaya boutique.
He said he would rather there were real exposes of the casting couch rather than such "framed" encounters. "If you really want to expose the casting couch, go get the people red-handed. This kind of encounter really has very little credibility."
India TV went to town with the tapes shot with hidden camera showing Kapoor seeking sexual favours from a journalist disguised as a Bollywood aspirant. The tapes also have Kapoor speaking about the casting couch in Bollywood and naming several big actresses, directors and producers.
The tapes have drawn strong comment from actors, some saying Kapoor should be banned from the film fraternity, others blasting India TV for trying to boost its sagging ratings through gimmicks.
"The basic point that a lot of people don't seem to see is that there is something called the private life of someone and that should always remain private," said Salman Khan.
"No one has the right to intrude into the private lives of people unless their actions have some public repercussion.
"Who's sleeping with who in the film industry, or anywhere else, is really of no one's concern but the people who are having sex with each other."
The actors were silent on whether or not the casting couch exists.
Said Jackie Shroff: "The issue is simple - whether or not people are sleeping for favours. I say whether they are or whether they are not is really their business. And whether it's as consenting adults or for any business deal that also is a private matter.
"It should be kept private. There is a lot of wrongs happening in this country and the media should concentrate on those rather than seek such sensationalism."