Singer Ankit Tiwari has been fighting a long legal battle since 2014 against a rape allegation by a woman whom he was allegedly involved with. Last week a special women’s court rejected his discharge plea in the rape case.
Ankit refuses to be cowed down by fate/destiny. “It is my karma. I guess I had to go through this. I am not complaining. But my family and I are fighting the charge.”
He admits it hangs over his head like a sword but refuses to see it as an obstacle in his career. “When it (the rape allegation) happened my career’s most precious song ‘Galiyaan’ was being hummed and celebrated all over the country. I received so many awards for the song. So I never felt isolated or stigmatized. In fact the music and film industry has been exceptionally supportive. I suppose they instinctively know when an allegation is legitimate or when not.”
Ankit agrees with me that there should an amendment in the law whereby a woman in a consensual relationship with a man cannot charge her live-in partner with rape when the partnership is dissolved.
Says Ankit, “And I wasn’t even living-in with her. I stayed with my family. I continue to live with them. My mother is a devotional singer. She singes jagratas. So spirituality runs through my family. Mata Rani (Goddess Durga) is with me. And I’ve parents’ blessings. I’ve nothing to fear.”
Ankit admits the experience has left him battle-scarred and weary of relationships. “I am frightened to even look at any woman. Yes, I do go to movies with my female friends. But make sure there is an empty seat between us. That seat will only be filled by my wife whenever she comes in my life.”