Ira Trivedi Exposes Chetan Bhagat E-mails, Sends Legal Notice

Ira Trivedi Exposes Chetan Bhagat E-mails, Sends Legal Notice

NEON

In his response to my piece in Outlook on 13 October in which I accused Chetan Bhagat of sexual harassment, Bhagat lied on Twitter to his 12.3 million followers. He accused me of wanting to kiss him. By this one tweet, he has maligned me, shamed me and harassed me further.

Below is the complete e-mail trail of the partial e-mail that Bhagat tweeted and misconstrued.

Here’s Bhagat’s response:

(Below is the transcript of the e-mail exchange.)

Ya, I dunno, just had so much to catch up on, so much to shop and just never got around to it. but spent a lot of time with my ex yoga teacher, and that was q transformative (sic) , so discuss things. he (sic) is a Canadian guy, q (sic) a dude and v (sic) modern approach to life...sort of helps me a lot. I have to go to Pune tomo (sic) for Anusha’s bday (sic), be the good hubby and host etc...hope I survive.

miss u...aww thanks

kiss you hmm...really. Figure of speech or something changing around here?

good you have your edits. something (sic) to do...

Here’s my response:

(Below is the transcript of the e-mail exchange.)

That’s nice ...

On yeah..bday tomo. Im (sic) sure it will e (sic) awesome...don’t worry. She ll kove u (sic) for it

Well I had my plate full w (sic) some articles for a couple of inti (sic) publications and I kinda was up and running w (sic) novel and now back to this. Not in the mood really to work on this...Plus diwali stuff starting w (sic) parties and all that...

ok be good...I cant wait to hear about yoga teacher situation.

His response:

(Below is the transcript of the e-mail exchange.)

ya he’s patrick...started doing yoga with him only, in hk (sic) . for a couple of years was really into it. became (sic) his friend more than teacher now, so he asks me for guidance about his issues - calls me a v (sic) practical person - i (sic) open up about my life to him..like that we r (sic) the same age. he’s obv v (sic) fit and hot too btw (sic). ya nice to meet people with different perspective. nice to just be out, india gets to me sometimes, eve tho (sic) i love it.-

u dodged the k (sic) question.

Mr Bhagat posted an e-mail accusing me of wanting to kiss him because I had ended an e-mail with “Miss u kiss u.”

I have used many salutations to end messages. These include “xoxo, x, love, love u, miss u”, emojis and many more including “miss u kiss u.”’ It is a figure of speech.

Mr Bhagat responded to my e-mail with this:

Kiss u (sic) – ...hmm...really? Figure of speech or something’s changing around here?

Yes, Mr Bhagat this is a figure of speech. As a best-selling author you know this better than most and NO, NOTHING has changed around here.

In this e-mail he admits to this comment being a figure of speech, he also asks if something is changing. After his previous pass at me, I had firmly and clearly told Mr Bhagat NO. My association with him was platonic. I had told him that if he could respect that, we could continue. He had apologised profusely and promised to respect my wishes.

I did not respond to Mr Bhagat’s questions in my next e-mail. I realised that I had made a big mistake by shooting off this e-mail in a hurry. However, Mr Bhagat persisted.

To my next e-mail, Bhagat said:

(Below is the transcript of the e-mail exchange.)

ya he’s patrick...started doing yoga with him only, in hk (sic). for (sic) a couple of years was really into it. became his friend more than teacher now, so he asks me for guidance about his issues - calls me a v (sic) practical person - i open up about my life to him..like that we r (sic) the same age. he’s obv v (sic) fit and hot too btw (sic). ya (sic) nice to meet people with different perspective. nice (sic) to just be out, india (sic) gets to me sometimes, eve tho i (sic) love it.

u (sic) dodged the k (sic) question.

Yes Mr Bhagat, I dodged your ‘k’ question, like I dodged your kiss, like I dodged your many passes, like I dodged your bad behaviour.

The e-mail trail ends here.

I met this man once a year, I thought it is best to ignore him and move on.

However, his lies do not end here.

In his next tweet, Mr Bhagat claims that I had invited him to be the chief guest at my book launch by posting a video.

The book that he mentions is Gumrah based on the TV Series on Channel V. I had been paid by the channel to put the TV series into a book format. Mr Bhagat had been independently approached to write the foreword.

We had both been paid to be part of the launch and promotions. I performed my professional duties, I thought he’d at least behave decently in public.

His conduct is not just inappropriate, but illegal as well. His attempts to kiss me and proposition me and his groping of my friend amounts to offences under Sections 509 and 354A of the IPC. His tweets and online statements about my allegations fall under sections of Sections 354D and Section 503 of the IPC. Further he has selectively produced my personal e-mail trail in a manner which is completely out of context and has made a public statement stating that I am trying to run a motivated, fake attack and smear campaign against him. With the magnitude of outreach that he has on social media it has resulted in lowering my reputation. Chetan Bhagat is being served with a legal notice regarding the same by my counsel on my behalf. 

After my article, I have been shocked at the stories of the young women who have reached out to me saying that they have been his victims. They are young and scared and afraid to come out. By silencing me through his false, unverified tweets Mr Bhagat has tried to scare women away and quash the #MeToo movement. He is not going to get away with it. Not anymore.

After his recent harassment of my friend and survivor accounts, I understood years too late that despite apologies, men like Chetan Bhagat cannot change unless there are confronted with their actions.

(Ira Trivedi is author of 10 Minute Yoga Solution and founder of Namami Yoga.)

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