An Open Letter To Mumbai Mirror By Pratyusha Banerjee’s Close Friends
An Open Letter To Mumbai Mirror ‘s Sanyukta Iyer, who mocked Producer Vikas Gupta saying ‘TV producer Vikas Gupta who took centre stage dressed in a Superman Tee and coordinated white-red shoes.’ Journalism or Personal Attack?
“I was returning from office , I got a call from a journalist saying that Piyu has tried to commit suicide and is in kokilaben hospital , like everyone i thought this to be a April fools joke . I immediately called her and heard a caller tune about leaving . i felt uneasy . i called a common friend to take her mums number and than messaged another friend saying hi and got a reply she is no more , in that split second i froze and knew it wasn’t an april fools joke . I called him and asked him to reach the hospital while i am on my way there and the messages started .
I informed a few close friends while i reached there and rushed to see Pratyusha , met Mac who went out to talk to Rahul , who had left the body and was on a call . i sat alone in one corner of the ward with her body , she was life less , but i was hoping she would get up any moment. i spoke to the doctor , who said whatever has to be spoken he has spoken to the family member and will wait only when the police comes will give any information , it doesn’t matter if you are friend , we r letting u sit here is a big deal . i wanted to speak to rahul but than i saw piyu lying there alone . i couldn’t move my body to leave her bedside , i was there for almost an hour with her alone although it seemed like that it was way more , this was pratyusha banerjee the girl who was the biggest face on indian television 2 years back . lying dead and no-one is here . her family is back home. the boy friend has dumped her body and said going to get her parents tickets done and run away . i looked at her face and realised it could be any of us . we all go through such perfect expectations out of our lives . it could have been me , i had just come out of a very disturbing phase and had almost contemplated ending it all but i had 2 people who i am grateful for the rest of my life to help m out of it . Pratyusha was no more and slowly the news travelled . people started pouring in .
Our common friends who were shooting were leaving their shoot and coming directly from there . than there were the ones who don’t even know her that came for reasons best known to them but some for publicity as the press was there while some out of curiosity and some had genuine concerns . a lot of people were there . its truly said in mumbai the life is so fast that we don’t have time for each other and sometimes a tragedy brings people together . Piyu did the same and as in the night we waited for the police to come , rahul to return , we spoke about her and what was she going through . we realised how selfish have we all been . we all knew she was in a bad relationship and yet none of us took charge and got her out of this . we go to know how she had tried to reach many of us for getting the right support or sometimes just to let the steam off , we discussed good and the bad times while waiting for rahul whose phone was switched off by than . in between we had celebs coming to see her body and video taping it secretly to calling her mom and recording the phone conversation which somehow reached the news channels and the country was now listening to cries of a wailing mother kudos . so i started directly talking to the mom and with the help of others booked their tickets . the news was flashing its a suicide , she was depressed , some really silly celebs went ahead and said she has borrowed 5 thousand rupees from her . it is this time we decided that 4 or 5 of us will talk to the media and say do no assume what has happened till the report comes out . There were lot of us but we decided to let the people who are faces that people know very well and people piyu was close to speak to counter the mini celebs spreading rumours . we wanted to do something but dint know what , we were all in shock .
we all went home as her body was taken to another hospital and the wait was for her parents to come tom , as i was trying to get sleep . i kept thinking what if it was me . in 2 weeks all this will get over people will move on and that will be the end of everything . i messaged one of the people who has helped me and said thank you but couldn’t sleep but somehow decided that what i was not able to do when piyu was alive i will do now . i will help on all possible ways to help her parents and get her to leave this world with dignity and not the way the people are wanting her to be remembered with all the fake testimonies from different people . she wasn’t a depressed broke actress as depicted who killed herself all over the media .
well the next part i don’t need to mention it was all over the media , and everyone got a version of it it was a media tv show . Piyu mom and dad were devastated and in no condition to talk also . they were made to give statements and than they took the body for cremation . they asked the police they haven’t seen what happened that night but want them to get justice for her daughter , she was a strong girl and she couldn’t have killed herself . there were numerous friends here who wanted to give statement as they knew more on the life of pratyusha here in mumbai than the parents as they dint live with her , they were told , that they will be called soon . while the cremation was happening as the rituals were being held , everyone notice marks on her face . they were marks you get if you get hurt , on her nose and her cheek , they were the same marks that people have been talking about since yesterday , now was the time we finally got to see her properly after that night and somehow we got sense and we clicked pics and made video of her .
Pratyusha ashes were given to the parents and we all planned to have a prayer meeting on tuesday after the rituals are done. Pratyusha had left the world .
we all were disturbed and were waiting to give statements to the police but no calls came and we were told that rahul has been set free , it was a pure case of suicide with no other reason but it could be depression and no money, so we all decided to quickly call media to tell them that there is more to this and we have been trying to follow up with the police and in a few hours we called for a pc . i was meeting someone for dinner and decided to push it and reach for the pc and same is the case with everyone else . the pc happened . we informed everyone about the marks on her face , the late night call she made before she was found dead asking for help to get out of the relationship and the call she made to kamya punjabi that rahul was cheating on her . what was communicated was that there is more than what meets the eye . we wanted to answers to how come there were marks on her face if she hung herself . it wasn’t a happy relationship that is being portrayed and a girl in a happy relationship doesn’t one fine afternoon get up and kills herself .
and yes i was wearing a white superman t shirt and white shoes .
A letter was submitted to the police station requesting to take statement of the people who can give vital information on the case
We all decided to have a peaceful prayer meeting for Pratyusha on tuesday, the first time in 3 days i slept for 5 hours I got up to numerous messages and missed calls from well-wishers and random people on a report in mumbai mirror . i read the report and my heart sank . and i thought of the people mentioned in the report who haven’t cared about their work sleep health and running everywhere being ridiculed and compared with people who have been extremely stupid and insensitive . There is a mention of actresses like Mouni Ada and Sara coming to hospital with makeup man etc , for the stupid journalist who is not aware and has mentioned names should know they were leaving their sets and coming directly so no they did not think of first doing a face cleaning ritual and than come and see the dead body of their friend . They were in tears they will have their staff who were with them during the shoot to console them , their friend, one of them had died. but you have decided to malign their image and portrayed them as publicity hungry women doing makeup and coming to give interviews . how convenient
Both heer patel who has been duped by rahul of 25 lakhs and sheetal malviya of 8 lakhs as told by us were unknown to us and till the claims were checked we did not want them to be standing there cause if what they said was untrue it would end up making the entire pc a joke and for your information we have checked and they are true and will hopefully be coming in front of the media as it shows a series of crime against women and duping them of money but Ms journalist you completely decided not to ask or clarify and had immediately judged and written how bad of us not to let people speak and if they were wrong the next thing you would have written is that we planted them and yes i am still in my superman t shirt .
if a girl is found dead and her boyfriend claims they were partying till 5 in the morning and we have a girl who is a friend of Pratyusha and Rahul’s rakhi sister leena dias had come to testify in the media that she got a call from pratyusha at 2.30 am crying and asking for help and was being tortured by saloni sharma and even after mentioning that there is a cctv footage of it available with the police you chose to make such a vital information into a joke again by calling me superman in the same sentence as pratyusha being tortured . your journalism ethics are to be clapped .
Incase you are not aware in the last three months the two acting jobs , Pratyusha had done were with me and not even charged for one of the pilots and people say she was without money , none the less we have been in touch with each other not as many time we should have been but we were . she was in touch with rahul raj singh every day for the last three months and more and he ran away leaving her body while we are right here fighting for her . Being a journalist doesn’t give you a right to assume and print anything that you might feel like and this personal attack is outrageous, you have moved on to ajaz khan to dolly bhindra but have not forgotten superman everywhere , either you love the super hero very much or you have loved the t-shirt too much . just for your information i hadn’t gotten time to go back home so changed and borrowed it from a friend ravi dubey as none of his clothes fitted me except this t-shirt and i had a dinner to go to . the shoes were the same i wore since 2 days . if you want that superman t-shirt , please contact ravi , he will give it to you .
i am not sure if you have real friend who you have had a heart to heart to . piyu and i were close and we have discussed our lives our dreams and the most important thing that we wanted and children was her dream so while media was hounding that pratyusha was pregnant and could have killed herself for that reason , was a height of stupidity and like you said superman jumped here and decided to say that if she was pregnant and knew about it than she would have never taken a step like this no matter the circumstance . while you being a woman had to make fun of that as well actually its not about a man or a woman it about just being sensitive which in your case is completely out of the window .
i am not sure what your problem is Sanyukta Iyer , you at this point of time seem like one of the celebs you mentioned in your article who wants attention and will write anything so people can notice you . Bravo you succeeded but remember this because of your this article the next time if genuine people want to get up and help a friend , they will think twice cause people like you for their own benefit whatever in this case may be will humiliate them on clothes , intent etc , you have defamed me and my friends . your article is defamatory , it has caused me a lot mental harassment and people questioning my intent . you have not even spoken to me and tried to ask questions and just made assumptions and printed . Mumbai mirror which is such a respected paper has let it happen. is it a thought out attempt to target or just bad way to sell your story . whatever reason it might be it has caused the damage it has done .
This letter also has been submitted to the police station where we requested the police to take statements from friends who have information and attaching a pics of Pratyusha where her bruises on here face clearly visible , so let everyone see , what we have seen and reacted . is this just a suicide or there is more to it .
Mumbai Mirror this is for you . please think about this . if a person close to you passes away and you have no answers . you see her face covered with bruises and its been called a suicide and when you raise a voice is this what you paper does calls them names makes fun of their clothes and try to humiliate them, #ShameMumbaiMirror
We are filling a complaint against your publication because it is a direct attack and look like a personal vendetta to malign some of us.
Whatever happens on this case moving forward we at least will look back and will not have any regrets , we did give our best to get justice for our friend. We feel extremely bad on posting these pics but have realised this is the only way to let people know the truth, there are loopholes and her parents and friends need answers , when its being told in the media that its a suicide case why is piyu face full of bruises None of us will be giving anymore statement on this . please talk to the police”
and the others who don’t want to be named but have helped .