`Kaanch` in lurch, producer-director lock horns
Mumbai: Director Kalpana Lajmi and producer Rajiv Kashyap`s project `Kaanch` has been put on hold after they locked horns over payment and harassment issues.
While Lajmi alleges that Kashyap harassed and conned her, the latter denies it and said that he has filed a defamation suit against the director.
The film was being shot in Bhopal and, according to Lajmi, Kashyap went absconding without clearing production dues and has been harassing and threatening her with false charges.
"Hundred people were held hostage (in a hotel) and some of them are still there. If anyone leaves, their personal belongings would be held back," Lajmi told reporters Wednesday at a press conference here.
She came to the press meet with Ila Arun, Avika Gaur, Pitobash Tripathy, costume designer Salim Asgarally and Dinesh Chaturvedi, general secretary of the Federation of Western India Cine Employees (FWICE).
"He has cast so many allegations against me and Ila Arun. He started sending bad messages to us. They were abnormal and absurd statements. I don`t know whether he is a crook or a con man, but he is a fraud," she said.
When IANS contacted Kashyap, he denied all charges and alleged that Lajmi is "mentally unstable".
"All the allegations are false. I have already filed a defamation cases against them with Rs.1.5 crore worth of penalty," Kashyap told reporters.
Commenting on Ila Arun`s allegation that the contract was not framed properly, he said: "I had to change the contract 500 times for this woman (Ila Arun). This was a plan between Ila Arun and Kalpana Lajmi to harass me.
"If there was a mistake in the agreement, why did she come for the shoot? She came for the shoot, took the cheque, got it passed and left in 15 days. So where is my fault in this? She`s so shameless that she has taken payment without signing the agreement. Both the agreements are lying at her place even today. It was my dignity that I let her cheque pass."
The film`s shooting stopped just after eight days.
Kashyap admits that he stopped Avika Gor and Lajmi`s payments. According to him, no other cheque has bounced.
"The entire hotel bill has been settled. Except my production manager, nobody is there at the moment. I have stopped Avika`s payment because her father is also part of their gang. He has been used by them and I am not against him at all. I have stopped Kalpanaji`s payment also because I gave her the cheque for 22 days and she has worked only for eight days. I paid everyone for 22 days and there was no need for them to encash it early," the producer alleged.
Kashyap plans to resume the shooting soon and is ready to work with different people. When asked about the creative rights of the film, he said everything is in his name.