Mallika Sherawat talked about how she lost roles because she refused to give into the pressure created by casting couch. Talking with PTI, she told how she suffered professionally because she refused to get intimate with her co-stars off-screen."I was thrown out of projects because heroes would say ’why can’t you be intimate with me? You can do it on screen, what’s the problem in doing that with me in private?’ I’ve lost so many projects. It’s very reflective of the society, what women deal with in our country,"
"There were so many accusations and judgements on me. If you wear short skirts, kiss on screen then you’re a fallen woman with no morals. Men tend to take liberties with you. This happened with me too," she added.
Mallika became a sex symbol because of the bold roles she took. But people often mistook this for her approval. "I’m a very headstrong woman, I can’t compromise. I’ve a lot of pride and self respect. There were times when directors have called me and said ’come to me at 3 am.’ I was so scared to talk about it because I thought they are going to blame me, that I must’ve behaved in such a way that prompted the director to say this. There is that victim blaming mentality which exists in our society and I always felt scared to talk about these things," she said.
"My story, where I come from and what I battled, was overlooked, and it was all about how many kissing scenes I had. It made me insecure because I thought I had so much more to offer. But there was only one aspect of mine being highlighted and I really suffered because of that," she quipped.
She added, "When people judged me, it made me very insecure, overtly critical of myself and question everything I did. It’s not a healthy space. At that time, a large section of the media was antagonistic towards me. They were always interested in sensationalism, which hurt me."