TVF CEO Arunabh Kumar has stepped down from his post in the aftermath of sexual harassment allegations.
Kumar posted a letter on his Twitter account explaining the decision. He said, “In the wake of the recent personal attacks, what really breaks me is the blemish on the brand’s true promise. I have therefore taken the decision to step down as the CEO of TVF.”
— Arunabh Kumar (@TheQtiyapaGuy) June 16, 2017
Dhawal Gusain will replace him as the CEO of the digital media startup. Confirming the development, Arunabh said, “Dhawal has a sharp business acumen and, together with our leadership team, will keep working tirelessly to scale TVF to greater heights and bring a renewed ambition and zeal to make TVF the best place to work at, for both women and men.”
Kumar, however, mentioned that he will be available to the TVF team as a mentor.
In March 2017, multiple women had spoken out on social media after the co-founder of TVF was accused of sexual misconduct by an anonymous Medium blogger.
Since no victim had come forward in the weeks after the allegations were made public, to formally lodge a complaint against him.
Later, two complaints were lodged at MIDC and Versova police stations each. A 27-year-old writer-director on March 29, 2017 filed a FIR against Kumar under Sections 354 A (causing sexual harassment) and 509 (insult the modesty of a woman by indecent words, gesture or acts) of the Indian Penal Code. The complaint was filed at the MIDC police station in Mumbai’s Andheri East suburb. The second FIR was registered at Versova police station on March 30, 2017 by a former employee.
Later in April, Kumar was given interim relief by the Dindoshi Sessions Court in the ongoing sexual harassment case against him.
In a similar development, in April 2017, the co-founder Suparn Pandey of another media startup Scoopwhoop was also accused of sexual harassment by a former employee. An FIR was filed with the Vasant Kunj police station in Delhi, under IPC section 354 A (sexual harassment), section 509 (insulting the modesty of a woman), and section 506 (criminal intimidation).