KARACHI: For decades, women across the globe have suffered due to domestic violence. Whether they belong to rural areas or metropolitan cities, females have been subjected to physical abuse by their loved ones time and again. Likewise, celebrities too have been victims of assault at various points in their lives.
One of the biggest victims of domestic violence was Bollywood beauty Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. Back in 1999, the 44-year-old actor started dating her co-star Salman Khan on the sets of Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam. While her family was extremely against their relationship, Aishwarya didn’t stop pursuing the Andaz Apna Apna actor. However, their relationship went sour in 2001 when Salman started taking undue advantage of her. According to reports, he would often show up at her apartment and beat her blue, while being under the influence of alcohol.
PHOTO: ZEE FILMS
In 2002, the blue-eyed beauty called it quits. While it may have been the end of their three-year-long relationship, it certainly wasn’t the end of Salman’s constant abuse towards her. On the sets of Kyun Ho Gaya Na, Salman was reported to have rammed his car into Aishwarya’s. He suspected Aishwarya of having an affair with Shah Rukh Khan as well which led to her being replaced in Chalte Chalte with Rani Mukerji. Aishwarya has often described her time with Salman as the “worst chapter” in her life.
Another Bollywood celebrity who was allegedly subjected to domestic violence was the Queen actor, Kangana Ranaut. Now Kangana’s name has often been wrapped around a lot of controversy. She was having an affair with actor Aditya Pancholi while he was still married to Zarina Wahab. Kangana and Aditya started dating in 2004 while the former was still a minor. On various occasions, Kangana stated that Aditya physically abused her. She mentioned that he would often put her under house arrest and that she would have to jump from her first floor window to escape. The actor continued that she had reached out to Zarina to seek help. However, when her efforts went in vain, Kangana was left with nowhere to go and reported Aditya to the police. Eventually, officials warned Aditya to keep his distance from Kangana, who had only recently started her Bollywood career. The two broke up after dating for over three years in 2007.
While speaking to an Indian publication, Aditya confessed that he did, in fact, hit Kangana because she was cheating on him. He added that he planned to spend an eternity with the Tanu weds Manu actor but couldn’t bear that she was getting close to other men.
As the world is undergoing a storm of #MeToo that calls out abusive men, it’s important to notice that Aishwarya and Kangana managed to reach the peak of their careers, despite the torture they faced. Aishwarya married Abhishek Bachchan in 2007 and the two now have a daughter. The Devdas star made her way to Cannes Film Festival numerous times, making herself known to the international audience.
Likewise, Kangana has wowed crowds with her exceptional performances as well. The actor has four Filmfare awards to her name for her performances in Gangster, Fashion, Queen and Tanu weds Manu.
While women from all over the world are only now coming out sharing their horrific stories with abusers, Aishwarya and Kangana should be lauded for speaking up against their predators at a time when such subjects were a taboo. They say it’s a man’s world but times are changing. Despite all odds, the two starlets have garnered a lot of success for themselves and emerged victorious – without the help of the #MeToo movement. Guess they called ‘Time’s Up’ a long time ago…
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