Rajinikanth appealed to Karnataka Chief Minister to facilitate the film's release by providing security.
Superstar-politician Rajinikanth's film "Kaala" will hit theatres across the country today, a day after the Supreme Court refused to stop its screening. Pro-Kannada groups had appealed against the film's release, upset with Rajinikanth over his comments on the Cauvery river dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. "Kaala's" release in Karnataka comes as the first big test for the new chief minister HD Kumaraswamy, who had said the film should not be released in his state "in the present situation".
Following are the 10 latest developments in this big story:
- HD Kumaraswamy on Wednesday said that though it was his government's responsibility to ensure "Kaala's" smooth screening, he advised the distributors to delay it till the Cauvery river dispute was resolved. Pro-Kannada organisations had met HD Kumaraswamy on Tuesday and urged him not to allow the film to be released.
- The Karnataka High Court had on Tuesday directed the state government to take adequate steps to ensure peaceful screening of 'Kaala' across Karnataka.
- Though the filmmakers are have been ordered from three courts to go ahead with the release, doubts continue about its screening in Karnataka today.
- "Kaala" is facing the anger of pro-Kannada groups who have threatened to disrupt screenings if the movie releases despite a ban by a Karnataka film body.
- Rajinikanth appealed to the Karnataka Chief Minister to facilitate the film's release by providing security at movie theatres in the state.
- Rajinikanth, who is from Karnataka, said in Kannada: "I understand HD Kumaraswamy's situation. This is not good for Karnataka. When the film is released around the world, the Karnataka ban would highlight the issue (Cauvery water dispute)... The Film Chambers is supposed to ensure that there's no problem for distributors. It is not right that the Karnataka Film Chamber demands Kaala".
- Last month, after the Congress government of Siddaramaiah was voted out of power in Karnataka, Rajinikanth had reportedly said no matter which government takes over, Karnataka should release Cauvery waters for Tamil Nadu.
- Mr Kumaraswamy urged Rajinikanth to visit the state and see the condition of farmers and the water level in the dams before commenting on the matter.
- The 765-km long Cauvery river, also called the Ganga of the south, is the lifeline for both Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The distribution of water between the southern neighbours has been disputed for over a century.
- In a landmark ruling in February, the top court reduced Tamil Nadu's share of water while raising Karnataka's part. The court had also ordered a Cauvery Management Board to monitor the release of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu by Karnataka. Karnataka has said it doesn't have enough water to release.
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