On September 27, Gayatri Sai, a former pageant winner and actor, leveled grave allegations of sexual misconduct against senior journalist Prakash M Swamy. The 40-year-old alleged that the scribe had sent her inappropriate messages on WhatsApp and molested her under the pretext of helping with her son's passport. She went on to say that she even filed a complaint with the Chennai police but no action was taken.
Prakash M Swamy, a United Nations correspondent alleges that Gayatri's claims are an attempt to stop him from publishing an investigative story on the death of her husband Sainath in March 2013.
"The first time I met her was in 2013 at a restaurant launch in Chennai. I was living in New York then and gave her my business card after a brief conversation. She was settled in Hong Kong with her husband," says Prakash. "A few months later, she called me and said that she is having some trouble with the Hong Kong embassy which was holding her passport and asked if I could help. I then called the embassy and they revealed that the local police were involved. They didn't divulge too many details, so I didn't want to interfere," he adds.
According to the journalist, Gayatri was being held back in Hong Kong following the death of her husband under suspicious circumstances. Sainath and Gayatri got married in 1999 and lived in Hong Kong. The Chartered Accountant who was President of a company named Pacific Basil passed away due to a heart attack at the age of 44.
Prakash claims that he had been tipped off that Gayatri had left Hong Kong soon after her husband's death and that there had been suspicions over his hurried cremation. He then asked Gayatri for her inputs on the story, which is when the abuse allegedly began.
Following this, the two have traded insults on social media as well as through personal messages. Over the last five years however, the journalist claims to have met Gayatri thrice, all times at public events. He further claimed that he had never met her alone or visited her at her residence. Gayatri however alleges that he had come to her house.
On June 28, Prakash Swamy filed a complaint of cyber bullying with the cyber crime branch in Chennai against Gayatri and some of her friends. The CCB however refused to comment on the matter when TNM contacted them.
Prakash says he dropped the complaint, wanting to give them a chance to 'repent'. The police were not willing to confirm this. But two days later, Gayatri filed a complaint of harassment against the journalist.
"But she failed to provide time, dates or any other satisfactory details. That is why her CSR says 'miscellaneous'," explains Prakash.
The journalist claims that even the 'other women' who have allegedly raised complaint of harassment against him, are set up by the actor.
"My story is 80% done," he says. "And I will publish the truth about her husband's death."
Gayatri Sai however continues to demand for Prakash Swamy's arrest and has also sought for various awards he has received, to be taken back.