Actor Rhea Chakraborty, who is accused of abetting Sushant Singh Rajput's suicide by his family, finally broke her silence after two months and opened up about her relationship with the late actor.
In an interview with Rajdeep Sardesai, when asked about how did she get to know about Rajput's mental condition or the fact that he was bipolar, Chakraborty said it was during their Europe trip. Rajput, she was told, used to get claustrophobic during flights and took medicines.
"We landed in Paris first and he didn't come out of his room for the first three days. I wondered what the matter was. He was so excited that we will go to Paris so that no one recognises him. So that he could show me his real self which was his fun nature. That he could walk on the streets, something which he could not do in India."
"But he didn't come out of his room. He was much better when we went to Switzerland next. He was high on energy and he had started getting out, he was happy," she said.
The actor said when they went to Italy, they stayed in a gothic hotel and had "a weird dome-like structure and strange photos".
Chakraborty talked about checking out "but he didn't listen to me".
"After that, his condition started getting worse little by little. He didn't want to come out of the room on the whole trip. I talked to him and he told me that he had an episode of depression in 2013," she said.
"Then he told me everything. that he was better after meeting the psychiatrist. He used to get anxiety attacks many times. But he had started feeling more depressed and worried. So we had to cut our trip short. If your partner is not feeling well, what else will you do? You'll come back," she said.
After the interview, Kangana Ranaut took to her Twitter to slam Chakraborty and wrote, "Only 2 things to take away from #RheaChakrobarty interview,first she said Movie mafia discredited and harassed him also planted organised smear campaigns which broke his mind,2nd she did not say that after that vultures like her and Mahesh Bhatt killed him again #ShameOnAajTak"
Sharing an old video of Sushant Singh Rajput, Ranaut rubbished Rhea's claims about claustrophobia while flying and added, "Fact #Sushant had no fear of flying who came up with this tacky script? Mahesh Bhatt or Javed Akhtar ?"
The 'Manikarnika: Queen of Jhansi' actress also shared her co-star, Rajput's ex-girlfriend Ankita Lokhande's post, where the latter had spoken about the same interview. Kangana wrote, "Fact #Sushant had no history of mental illness before dating Rhea last year, this mental illness plot point was introduced in a goth hotel post genius plot twist of air sickness on a trip to Europe, who is the lame script writer?"
Chakraborty, along with her family members, is also accused of misappropriating Rajput's wealth by the actor's family but she dismissed the allegations in a TV interview.
After Mumbai Police, Enforcement Directorate and Central Bureau of Investigation are investigating varous angles in the actor's death.
Opening up about her much-talked-about Europe trip with the late Bollywood star, who died by suicide on June 14 in Mumbai, the young actor said in an interview to Aaj Tak that she was set to go to Paris on a professional assignment.
She said it was Rajput's idea to make a "Europe trip" about it and he cancelled the tickets booked by the company that was sponsoring her trip. She said her brother joined them in Italy at the insistence of the late actor.
"He paid for the rest of the trip and the hotels. He wanted to and I didn't have a problem with that. I had a problem with how much he was spending. But Sushant lived king size, he was like that," she said, adding that he once went on a trip to Thailand with his friends and spent "Rs 70 lakh" on that vacation.
"These were his lifestyle choices. Who are we to say how Sushant should live his life? He lived like a star, he loved it. It was his choice to take those men on that trip, did they also force him? No, I was not living off Sushant Singh Rajput's money. We were living like a couple," she told senior journalist Rajdeep Sardesai.
Asked about why her brother Showik joined them on their Europe trip, Chakraborty said all three of them had formed an artificial intelligence company called Rhealytix, which was named after her and invested Rs 33,000 each in the firm.
The actor said she was not on the list for his funeral as "his family members don't like me".
Chakraborty said she wanted to attend the funeral but dropped the idea at the suggestion of her friends as the family did not want her there.
The actor said her friends told her that "you will be ridiculed, you will be thrown out. You are already not in a sound mental state. Don't come here".
Chakraborty said two of her friends told her to see his body to get closure. She said she saw Rajput's body for three-four seconds "said sorry and touched his feet".
"Yes, I said 'Sorry babu'. When you see a dead person, what else will you say? I said sorry as he was no more. When you love someone and they die, you say sorry. Sorry that you aren't here. Sorry that a joke has been made out of your death," she said.
Asked about allegations that she was controlling Rajput's lifestyle and staff, Chakraborty rubbished them as "baseless" and most of the staff was either hired by Rajput and his sister Priyanka.
Chakraborty said her "media trial" was a "witch hunt".
"Loving someone has become the most wanted crime," she said, adding that she now just wanted to take a "deep breath" and have a normal day with her family where someone is not facing an anxiety attack.
"This is a conspiracy to break me, my family. Kangana Ranaut ji said 'it was a systematic breakdown of a fragile mind', then what is it?" Chakraborty also claimed that Rajput did not share a good relationship with his father K K Singh.
Referring to her July 16 post on Instagram where she had tagged Home Minister Amit Shah, requesting for a CBI inquiry, Chakraborty said she had cooperated with the Mumbai Police and was doing the same with the Enforcement Directorate and CBI.
"Am I not allowed to prove my innocence?" Chakraborty asked, adding that all kinds of stories were being mad
(With inputs from PTI)