“Indian Fowler” published an essay on Medium titled “The Indian Uber- That is TVF” on March 12. That essay is getting plenty of views and attention on Tuesday, March 14, because of the accusations of sexual harassment it contains against Arunabh Kumar. As a result, Twitter hashtags and handles like #tvf, @theviralfever, and #iamwithak have come alive. According to the below tweet from Story Pick, the entire affair regarding Kumar and those accusing him of wrongdoings is turning into an ugly affair. On Twitter, Arunabh Kumar can be found at @TheQtiyapaGuy, which describes Kumar as the Founder & CEO of TVF (TheViralFever).
Hey #TVF I just corrected your "official press release" …
— Rashi Kakkar (@rashi_kakkar) March 13, 2017
As reported by the Mumbai Mirror, the IVF boss has denied the charges and has challenged the anonymous writer of the Medium essay to file charges against him.
— Sushmita Sen (@s_sen03) March 14, 2017
According to Fowler’s report, she first met Arunabh in 2014. The self-described “young and bubbly” Fowler met Kumar at a small cafe. She called Arunabh a man from Bihar, her native state, who was trying to exalt himself in Mumbai. Fowler wrote that she was a 22-year-old, fresh out of college at that point, attempting to get a job as a freelancer in production since she couldn’t find full-time employment. However, with Kumar hailing from the same city of Muzaffarpur, and enjoying Bihari speak with Fowler, Arunabh offered Fowler a job with the “Uber cool” startup he created. Fowler claims Kumar was hiring “talent,” which she called his “toys,” after delving into what she alleged is her “story of abuse and molestation.”
— BuzzFeed India (@BuzzFeedIndia) March 13, 2017
After 21 days on the job, Fowler claimed she got a call from Arunabh at 6:45 p.m., asking her to come back to the office. After reluctantly returning to work, Fowler claimed that two of the three people who were there in the office left about five minutes after she arrived. Arunabh sat casually on a chair, Fowler alleges, and began talking about the Red Light District of Muzaffarpur. Fowler next claimed Arunabh held her hand, stunning her and causing her to run away and lock herself in the bathroom and cry until Kumar left. She wrote that it was the longest night of her life — and that the sexual harassment didn’t stop.
“Since then it became routine. Right from Pitchers to Tripling, I was molested. Be it in parties where Arunabh would try to lift me or would try and fall on me pretending he is drunk. One instance was the Ola deal. The Ola team was meeting him and we were taking notes. He walks out of the meeting with some excuse and calls me for some notes. I walk up. He says it’s time we do a quicky. I am stunned. And I told him I will go to the police. He says ‘Police to meri pocket me hai.’ I walked out deciding never to come back. Then get a call from Legal saying that I am in a breach of contract. Even my Mom tells me not to fight them.”
Fowler’s mother told her that a 24-year-old girl didn’t have the power to fight a man like Kumar with so much money. Arunabh called Fowler’s father, she wrote, to claim she was making up stories. Thoughts of suicide infiltrated her mind. Arunabh acted like a pimp, Fowler writes, but “not a bad guy.” Instead, she wrote he was honest in his mannerisms. Fowler left her job last year, “jobless, mindless,” calling herself not as strong as other women.
“Arunabh, I know that you know who I am.”
Fowler’s story is reverberating on social media, as more accusations like those below against Kumar from others appear on Twitter.
— StoryPick (@StoryPicker) March 14, 2017
Fowler isn’t the only woman who has made such accusations.
— Snehal (@hpsneh) March 13, 2017
[Featured Image by Stephen Lam/Getty Images]