Aaliyah Kashyap, daughter of filmmaker Anurag Kashyap, on Friday said that she has been targeted by many Instagram users with "degrading and disgusting" comments after she posted her picture in lingerie.
She had posted a picture of herself late last month promoting a lingerie brand following which she said she was flooded with messages that pushed her to contemplate deleting her page on the photo-video sharing website.
Aaliyah, who has over 20,000 followers on Instagram, said she is "frightened" by the remarks that she has been subjected to in the past few weeks.
"The past few weeks have been really hard on my mental health. Ever since I posted a photo of me in lingerie, I have been getting the vilest, degrading and disgusting comments. I have never felt more frightened than I have in the past few weeks to the point where I considered deleting my Instagram," she wrote in a lengthy statement.
Aaliyah said she initially tried to ignore the social media harassment, but felt there was a need to share her experience as such comments "contribute to the rape culture".
"We seem to be a country that will hold candle marches for a woman after she's been sexually assaulted but won't protect a woman while she's alive. And the truth is that women in India grow up being sexualized their whole lives. I have grown up with these kinds of comments to the point where it culminated into me being sexually assaulted as a minor by a middle-aged man," she added.
Attaching the screenshots of vitriol-filled comments on her post, she wrote, "They are the same men that are fine with following me and consuming the content I post, yet choose to harass me. If you truly disagree with what I post, then you are free to unfollow me. Nothing I do or post is an invitation for sexual assault."
Aaliyah, who lives in California, US, said instead of asking women to keep a check on their clothes, it is important to "unteach men the predatory behaviour that has been normalised in our society."
"This is my body, my life and I choose what I want to do with it," she concluded.
This is not the first time Aaliyah has been subjected to such remarks. In May 2019, her filmmaker father had said that she had received rape threat from a social media user. He had later lodged an FIR.
The director is currently working on his new age thriller "Dobaara", starring Taapsee Pannu.
(With PTI inputs.)