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Pakistani singer Meesha Shafi has accused actor Ali Zafar of sexually harassing her multiple times. Shafi, who wrote a lengthy note on Twitter on Thursday evening, said, “These incidences did not happen when I was young, or just entering the industry. This happened to me despite the fact that I am an empowered, accomplished woman who is known for speaking her mind. This happened to me as a mother of two children.”
She added, “Today, I speak up because my conscience doesn't allow me to be silent anymore.”
Sharing this because I believe that by speaking out about my own experience of sexual harassment, I will break the culture of silence that permeates through our society. It is not easy to speak out.. but it is harder to stay silent. My conscience will not allow it anymore #MeToo pic.twitter.com/iwex7e1NLZ— Meesha Shafi (@itsmeeshashafi) April 19, 2018
The Pakistani singer, who claimed to have known Zafar for years, wrote, “I feel betrayed by his behaviour and his attitude. I know that I am not alone.”
Shafi, who tagged Zafar a repeated offender, added, “I have been subjected, on more than one occasion, to sexual harassment of a physical nature at the hands of a colleague from my industry: Ali Zafar.”
Shafi added, “Sharing this because I believe that by speaking out about my own experience of sexual harassment, I will break the culture of silence that permeates through our society. It is not easy to speak out... but it is harder to stay silent. My conscience will not allow it anymore #MeToo.”
After Meesha shared a detailed post, Zafar too responded within hours by denying all the allegations. He wrote, “I categorically deny any and all claims of harassment lodged against me by Ms Shafi."
Zafar, after being called a repeated offender, wrote, “I have nothing to hide. Silence is absolutely not an option. I intend to take this through the courts of law and to address this professionally and seriously rather than lodge any allegations here. Ultimately I'm a strong believer that the truth always prevails.”
While Meesha Shafi is an actress and singer, who has starred in several Pakistani and Bollywood projects including Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Ali Zafar has worked in movies like Dear Zindagi, Mere Brother Ki Dulhan, Kill Dil, etc.