Director Pijush Saha opens up on 20 lakh fraud allegation; Here is the statement

Director Pijush Saha opens up on 20 lakh fraud allegation; Here is the statement

Tollywood Director-Producer Pijush Saha, who produced super hit films like Kartabya, Raju Uncle, and Tulkalam was arrested on the charges of duping an aspiring actor of Rs 20 lakh. The newcomer actor named Akshay Gupta filed a complied against the director. Pijush Saha was arrested on May 30 and released on bail on June 6.

And recently, the renowned director-producer who launched actors like Soham Chakraborty, Ankush Hazra, and Subhashree Ganguly, opened up to the media on the allegations.

In Pijush Saha's statement:

''Akshay was a student of my acting workshop. He and his mother approached me to make him a hero after watching Hari Ghosher Gowal. I clearly stated that I don't have that kind of money. Besides, I have given opportunities to many people before, but I can't afford to do it anymore. Then Akshay himself suggested that he can give me 20 lakh. I explicitly said that a film can’t be made with only 20 lakh. Despite that, I assured him that if two more people can contribute then a thriller can be made based on three main characters. In that case, Akshay will be a co-producer of the film and receive a share from the profit. Our legal contract also stated that Akshay Gupta cannot work in any other film during our production as an exclusive artist. Then I hire scriptwriters, music directors, and technicians. However, then the lockdown happened, and work was put on hold for two years. In 2022, work resumed. We emailed Akshay the script, and he was also called up for an acting workshop. We even called him repeatedly'' said Pijush Saha.

Director Pijush Saha with Ankush Hazra
Director Pijush Saha with Ankush Hazra

The director further added that from various sources, he came to know that Akshay had started working on another film without informing him. 

''When I called Akshay, he said that he doesn't want to work on the film we discussed because he is now a big actor, and he is working with Ananya Guha and Rupsha Mukherjee in 'Radhakrishna Productions' film titled ‘Nerve’. So, he won't share the screen with any other actor. But I had already advanced payments to everyone, and according to the contract, since he was the co-producer, I couldn’t start the film without a NOC from him. We repeatedly asked him for the NOC, but he didn’t give anything. Then out of nowhere, he filed a police case against me. In the meantime, he informed the media about his mother's cancer and many other things that he never told me. Instead, he said that he is playing the only hero in a film that’s being made on a budget worth Rs 40 lakh'' added Pijush Saha.

Akshay had earlier claimed that the script of 'Jaalbandi' was sent to him and he was promised as the lead actor in the film. To this, Pijush counters by saying, "Will he be able to provide any evidence for such a big lie? What will you say if he suddenly claims that that 'Tulkalam' was initially offered to him instead of Mithun Chakraborty? There should be a limit to lying."

The director-producer also said, "I have been working in this industry for the past 25 years. I have launched so many people into this industry and no one can say that I have unfairly taken a single penny. Am I crazy to take a figure like 20 lakhs without any contract or paperwork? I have no tax evasion or hidden agendas. Unlike others, I haven't bought a Mercedes or BMW, nor have I built big houses or cars. I have made films because I love cinema, without thinking about profit or loss. When a project starts, around 50-60 technicians among others depend on it. It's very unfortunate for me to face such allegations after giving so many hit films over the years. If such things happen then will any producer want to work with newcomers? Many producers have called me and said they are standing by my side because how long will the producers be exploited like this? When someone becomes a doctor or an engineer, parents invest a lot to provide a good education and it takes money to open a shop as well. But all the expenses of the cinema industry fall solely on the producer. Why should it be like this? These new actors should be co-producers and only then they will understand the challenges. If Akshay had issues then why didn’t he reach out to the federation? Chief Minister herself said if there is any problem in the industry, we should inform all these organizations first. So, Is it just a desire to get money or is it to tarnish Pijush Saha, it is quite understandable''.

The case is currently pending in court. Pijush Saha said that he has complete faith in the judicial system.

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