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Ali Zafar files Rs1bn defamation suit against Meesha Shafi

LAHORE: Renowned Pakistani singer Ali Zafar has taken fellow singer Meesha Shafi to a court for levelling what he said baseless allegations of sexual harassment against him.

The singer-cum-actor filed a defamation suit in a Lahore court through his lawyer, requesting it to direct Ms Shafi to tender an apology over levelling baseless allegations and pay Rs1 billion in damages.

Earlier, he had sent a legal notice to the female singer days after the latter accused him of sexually harassing her on multiple occasions.

In a post shared on micro-blogging site Twitter, Meesha Shafi claimed that she had been subjected to sexual harassment “of a physical nature” by Ali Zafar on multiple occasions.

The singer-cum-actress used the hashtag #MeToo to link it with an international movement against sexual harassment and assault.

In his first response to allegations leveled by Meesha Shafi, Ali Zafar had categorically denied all the allegations but had announced to take the matter to courts of law.

He had said that he is deeply aware and in support of the global #MeToo movement and what it stands for but “contesting personal vendettas on social media” is tantamount to disrespecting the movement, his family, the showbiz industry and his fans.

Meesha Shafi maintained that these incidents (of sexual harassment) did not happen when she was young or just entering the industry. “This happened to me despite the fact that I am an empowered, accomplished woman who is known for speaking her mind! This happened to me as a mother of two children,” wrote the 36-year-old mother of two.

She lamented that she felt “betrayed” by Ali’s behaviour as he is someone she has known for a long time and has shared the stage with.

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