Mumbai: Social media influencer Manisha Rani emerged as the second runner up of Salman Khan’s Bigg Boss OTT 2 on Monday. After coming out of the house, Manisha reacted to netizens calling co-contestant Pooja Bhatt’s father, veteran filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt, ‘Tharki Buddha’ for touching her ‘inappropriately’.
In one of her latest interviews, Manisha said that Mahesh Bhatt is like her ‘uncle’ and she was not uncomfortable.
“If people are thinking that he touched me inappropriately, then that’s very wrong. He’s like my uncle, my father. Elders often express their love for young people in a certain way, sometimes by touching them. When he told us to shut up, I got a little scared because I’m someone, who can’t keep quiet. Mahesh Bhatt is a very big director. It was my dream to meet him. His intentions were very pure,” she told News 18.
After the grand finale, Pooja, who was one of the finalists, also reacted to the backlash her father received. She reportedly stated that Mahesh Bhatt hugged and kissed other contestants too.
She told ETimes, “When Manisha hugs other contestants and asks for kisses then nobody has a problem. I think people forget duniya hum waise he dekhte hain jaise hum hote hain… duniya hum waise nahi dekhte jaise duniya hai. If people actually think like this, good luck to them… I don’t think Mahesh Bhatt or I need to clarify or dignify this.”
Recalling the incident, when Mahesh entered the Bigg Boss OTT 2 house, he walked directly towards Manisha with open arms, and she hurried to touch his feet. Mahesh, before asking her to refrain from doing so, even attempted to touch her feet and later hugged her. This interaction made Manisha visibly uncomfortable, although she did not voice her discomfort. The incident drew criticism on social media, as many found the filmmaker’s gestures inappropriate.