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Karan Oberoi reveals how a right swipe on Tinder turned his life ‘upside-down’!

In an exclusive interview with CineBlitz, Karan Oberoi opens up about rape allegations, #MenToo movement and how the charges affected him and his family; read on…

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Karan-Oberoi

TV actor Karan Oberoi – who was arrested in May on charges of rape and blackmailing – was finally granted bail earlier in June. The actor was in police custody for almost a month, and now that he is out, he is trying to bring about a change for men. In an exclusive conversation with us, Karan revisits his ordeal, speaks on the charges against him and also reveals his plans of #MenToo movement

How was it seeing your friends and family support you so steadfastly?

It started with my best friend Pooja Bedi… I feel very blessed. Pooja and my sister are the two Baahubalis of my life. I have come through this ordeal is all thanks to the two of them. The tremendous support they got for me, people who knew me, who associated with me at some point in life have contributed to this.

Did you ever imagine a right swipe on Tinder would put you in so much trouble?

Absolutely no, it came as a shocker to me. For me it was traumatic, horrendous, terrifying, something I am still coming to terms with it. It turned my life upside-down; it was something I never expected would turn this way. But the good thing is that truth is prevailing, the reality has come out. It is sad though that nobody is safe, and to see how anybody can manipulate the law to such an extent.

Pooja Bedi started the #MenToo movement in your support and you are now taking it forward…

Absolutely, I have a social responsibility. Pooja is doing it because she wants to bring in a change that will affect thousands and lakhs of men. I told her the inside story of 600 people that were along with me and 80-90 per cent of them were false cases. They were very similar to mine, but they didn’t have the kind of love and support I had.

Being a celebrity, such strong charges sabotage the image. How do you do the damage-control then?

Yes, but what can one do? This thing is completely out of my control. All I can do is wait for justice to happen. The good part is that anyone who has known me for 20 years was not willing to buy any of these charges. So, that support was overwhelming to say the least, people outside the prison might have believed it. But inside, I was surrounded by 92 inmates in Taluja, not one person was ready to believe this and they didn’t even know me. I couldn’t eat or sleep there, the conditions were appalling and inhumane, so I just went off-food and off-sleep. But these people were such a force, that they were constantly reassuring me that all will be okay. I was very broken by the number of stories I saw there, they were horrifying and all because they don’t have representation. They don’t have a Pooja Bedi in life; I do, so I have decided that I will be their Pooja Bedi now.

The latest update is that the victim is arrested, so how is the matter shaping up now?

I am not very sure, but I believe that law is taking its call. Although, there is bit of a lag in the investigating agencies doing the right thing. Legally, I don’t know how things go from here on, but at least a step in the right direction to correct the wrong has started.

With cases like these do you think the #MeToo movement has its disadvantages?

There are advantages and disadvantages of every movement, but the law has to have more clarity. Anything that can be manipulated to suit conveniences or vendetta has to be looked at all over again. There have been enough citations in Supreme Court and High Court. The judges have been very kind in their assessment of the case. But the law needs to be amended, which is what the #MenToo movement is, it will fight for justice and gender neutrality, which is the need of the hour. What we are saying is to amend the law and not give someone unabashed power. #MenToo affected my mother the most, she was broken and shattered. My sister was affected, Pooja was hurt, they are all women. There were so many women who came together to fight for me, they were all affected by this.

Have people started approaching you with their #MenToo stories?

Too many of them, people are writing to me. We live in a bubble, but when the harsh reality hits you it’s languishing and hurting. If this continues, I am going to start getting very scared of women and it will create a very strange situation in society.  Every man will be running scared, not knowing when this unabashed power will hit them.

Have you resumed things on the professional front?

There is a lot happening on that, I have a film called Strawberry Point which is releasing. I was caught two days before we were going to plan the release of the film. I have been approached for a lot of web-series; I am also finishing my book that I started writing in prison. So, professionally I am alright.

Stay tuned to CineBlitz for more updates!

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