The Vanniyar Sangam, up in arms against actor Suriya for the alleged controversial portrayal of the community in his latest film Jai Bhim, has approached the Union Information and Broadcasting Ministry and the Tamil Nadu Information and Public Relations Department not to consider the movie for any appreciation, recognition or award.
The film, according to Pu Tha Arulmozhi, state president of Vanniyar Sangam, does not deserve any recognition or appreciation, despite the storyline based upon real life incident to exhibit the misery undergone by an underprivileged man and his wife, owing to the “mischievous sequences deliberately inserted in the movie for the purpose of damnifying the particular community.”
In a representation to the governments, made through his advocate K Balu, Arulmozhi urged the authorities not to entertain Jai Bhim for any appreciation, recognition or award. “My client states that the scenes in the movie amount to offend under sections 153, 153 A, 499, 503, 504, 505 IPC and his team continuously indulging in activities of degrading and defaming the most backward and downtrodden communities like Vanniyars and other communities. Hence, my client calls upon you not to consider the movie for giving any appreciation or recognition either by considering for national award or any other award whatsoever,” Balu said in the representation on Thursday.
Certain scenes were deliberately included in Jai Bhim to create communal disharmony between the Vanniyar community and another community. “This irresponsible depiction of Vanniyar community in poor light is deliberate and the producers and director cannot claim innocence.
Under the guise of freedom of expression, they cannot defame particular section in the society. A different and negative picture was painted in the movie contrary to the truth as seen in real life when the Vanniyar community people stood for the social justice. The true story has been deliberately twisted with a view to malign the image of Vanniyar community and lower their reputation in the eyes of the people of all other communities," he said.
The film, released on OTT platform by Amazon, distorted truth and twisted facts and displayed a calendar with Agni Kundam - the symbol of Vanniyar Sangam, and named the sub inspector of police who tortured the victim in police custody, as Gurumurthy after a popular leader of the Vanniyar community. The depiction aimed at creating communal disharmony in the country. But the real name of the police official was Anthonysamy, he said and also claimed that the sub inspector who commits the grave crime does not belong to the Vanniyar community.
Further, Arulmozhi who is contemplating filing civil and criminal case against the production team for deliberate mischief done by them, has already issued a legal notice on November 15 to the producer, director and Amazon.in asking them to remove the defamatory scenes and any references to the community and its symbol of Agni Kundam in Jai Bhim immediately. Also, he had demanded an unconditional apology for having produced and released the film on OTT platform for public viewing with the objectionable scenes. Apart from seeking them to "deist from screening the false, malicious and defamatory remarks" against the Vanniyar community, Arulmozhi demanded damages to the tune of Rs 5 crore within 7 days from the time of receipt of this notice.
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