THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A letter written by 49 eminent citizens to Prime Minister Narendra Modi protesting against the lynchings in the country has triggered a row between noted film director Adoor Gopalakrishnan and BJP spokesperson B. Gopalakrishnan.
Adoor is one of the signatories to the letter dated July 23 which said, “the Hindutwa’s key slogan ‘Jai Shri Ram’ has become a war cry leading to law and order problems and many lynchings in its name.”
B. Gopalakrishnan said in a Facebook post that if Adoor cannot tolerate ‘Jai Shri Ram’ call, he should better go to Sriharikota, register his name and go to moon or other planets. Or else, ‘Jai Shri Ram’ chanting will also be done in front of Adoor’s home.”
Adoor responded saying, “If somebody gives me a ticket to the moon, I shall go there. Till now, the call was to go to Pakistan, but today...I’m allowed to go to the moon… that sounds good.”
Adoor maintained that his protest was not against the chanting of ‘Jai Shri Ram’ but against the killings in the name of the slogan. He demanded that the people behind the lynching should be given death sentence and added that if BJP men come to his house chanting ‘Jai Shri Ram,’ he too would join them.
“I had not blamed the ruling government in the letter to the Prime Minister. I just wanted to bring the violent incidents in the country to the notice of the PM,” added Adoor.
In response to the BJP leader’s comment that Adoor was showing intolerance because he had not yet got any award from the BJP government, Adoor said Gopalakrishnan may not know that he has already got almost all the coveted awards.
“If it is a jilebi, I have not got it. He can send that to me,” said Adoor.
Gopalakrishnan said in his post: “Krishna and Ram are one… synonyms… This is Ramayana month. Shri Ram chanting will hence rise in India and neighbouring countries. People had voted only for the chanting of Jai Shri Ram in India. Chanting that name is one's democratic right. If it is not chanted in India, where else can it be chanted? If Gandhiji were here today, he would have sat in sathyagraha in front of Adoor’s house,” he said.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, KPCC president Mullapally Ramachandran and AICC general secretary Oommen Chandy condemned Gopalakrishnan’s comments. Directors Kamal and T. V. Chandran also supported Adoor....