Looks like Santhanam's attempt to play hero has landed him in a huge controversy with a Hindu community. Santhanam's latest release A1 (Accussed no. 1) has been accused of hurting the sentiments of the Brahmin community and a political party called Hindu Tamizhar Katchi (HTK) also filed a complaint against the hero of the movie Santhanam and the producer Rajnarayanan for depicting the Brahmin community in a bad light, on the release of its trailer.
Tara Alisha Berry is paired opposite Santhanam in the upcoming film, which has music by Santhosh Narayanan. The film is a love story of a North Chennai resident and a Mylapore Brahmin girl. The teaser showed a scene where a Brahmin woman was eating an omlette to prove her love for the hero and this did not go down well with many who felt that such scenes would create an enmity between caste groups. But now after the movie's release, things don't seem to be going down easy either.
Many people took to the social media to voice their disapproval and videos condemning Santhanam's dialogues are doing the rounds. Political activist Uma Anandan can be seen bashing Santhanam in a video on his choice of comedy and reprimands him for bashing the Brahmin community.
Speaking to Deccan Chronicle about the right to freedom of speech, Uma Anandan says, “Freedom of speech always comes with a line which should not be crossed. Media needs to play responsible when it comes to talking about peoples’ beliefs and religious sentiments”.
Earlier the producer of the film Rajnarayanan, speaking to Deccan Chronicle, had said “It's a love story of a local boy Saravanan played by Santa and a Brahmin girl (Tara) and the first half is a romantic comedy with a dark second half. These dialogues are passing references and when you watch the film, you will know there are no such visual scenes. And, the Censor Board has given a clean chit in a ‘U’ certificate for the film. Moreover, I haven't received any notification from the police (sic).”
A member from the censor board, who prefers to remain anonymous, tells us, “There is no central system followed while choosing members of the censor board- 2 male, 2 female and 1 regional officer. There has to be a uniform code or rules which apply while passing any film. But that is not the case. Here, personal choices come in play many times and if one member disagrees, they are emotionally blackmailed into giving in. A lot of lobbying takes place and this needs to stop”.
The community feels that the reason they are an easy target always is because they do not to like to ruffle their feathers at such mockeries. Arun Suresh, a hospitality manager says, “I am not against any religion. I have friends from different community and I respect their beliefs. Movies like these portray Brahmins and Hindus in a wrong way and put down ladies in a cheap way, which is not acceptable. Comedy is to make everyone laugh but it should not hurt feelings of people or target a particular segment”. He feels things are going overboard in the name of freedom of speech and thoughts and should not happen to any community or religion.