Reports surfaced Saturday morning that actress Preity Zinta had filed an official police complaint against ex-boyfriend Ness Wadia for assault and molestation.
Businessman Wadia told reporters that the "allegations are totally false and baseless."
While police investigations are underway, several people took to Twitter to accuse Zinta of fabricating this incident as a publicity stunt:
Others said they're skeptical of Zinta, because she had once been in a consensual relationship with Wadia:
In response, it was noted that this mindset of skepticism regarding abusive relationships is in line with marital rape being non-punishable in India:
Another source of outrage was that news channel Times Now began reporting the story under the hashtag #PreityNessMess:
Their characterization of Zinta's attempts at justice as a "mess" has sparked widespread criticism:
Zinta released a statement to the media, requesting privacy:
This is a very difficult time for me. I request the media to respect my privacy. My intention isn't to harm any one but only to protect myself.
And published a post via her official Facebook page, explaining her decision to report this case of abuse. It is excerpted below:
I may not be super wealthy and powerful but I have truth by my side and I've worked very hard all my life and tried to earn respect for myself as a self made professional. It saddens me that no one at work or around ever stood up for me in the past when i was abused and insulted publicly. This time i was left with no option but to take this stern step.
Ironically what happened at Wankade is being diluted by every other fabricated story about my character except the truth of what happened. I'm sure the witnesses will speak the truth and i trust and believe that the police will do their job fairly and quickly.
I humbly request the media and my supporters to pls focus on the issue and the incident that happened in Wankade and not turn this and me into a TV soap. This is not easy for me and my intention is not to harm anyone but simply to protect myself and to stand up for myself.