Chennai: The DMK has urged the Election Commission (EC) to take steps to stop the release of the biopic film on the BJP leader and incumbent Prime Minister titled, ‘PM Narendra Modi’, scheduled for release in theatres in April first week, stating it would not be proper to release such a movie when the poll code of conduct for the 2019 general elections to the Lok Sabha is in force. In Tamil Nadu the scheduled poll date in April 18 and nominations have begun.
Popular Bollywood star Vivek Oberoi is playing the lead role in the film, produced by a team including Sandeep Singh, Anand Pandit and Suresh Oberoi, while the movie is being directed by Omung Kumar.
Sources in the Coimbatore district collectorate here on Friday confirmed to DC that the issue of the impropriety of the film's release, when the poll process has already commenced, has been brought to the notice of the EC through the district collector, who is also the district election officer for the Lok Sabha polls, by a DMK functionary, P Arasu Bupathi, party's district deputy secretary of the DMK's Engineers Wing, Pollachi, Coimbatore South, Coimbatore district.
Mr. Arasu Bupathi has marked a copy of the letter to Mr. Sunil Arora, Chief Election Commissioner, New Delhi, besides to the Tamil Nadu Election Commissioner in Chennai.
Stating that, “cinema is a major source of advertisement” , the letter draws the EC's attention to release of the film depicting the “current PM's (Narendra Modi) political lifestyle” and the movie is “party oriented”, alluding to the ruling BJP.
Mr. Bupathi said in his letter that as the movie would be more of a “promotional” one which will have an “impact” during election time, the EC should “temporarily ban” the screening of the movie, at least until May 19, 2019, when the last phase of the 7-phase general elections to the Lok Sabha would come to an end.
However, it is surprising that a little known, Engineers wing functionary of the DMK from Pollachi should petition the EC on such an issue, when the DMK would have normally fielded its big guns like sitting MPs' or senior party functionaries. It appears the DMK wants to lodge a protest “nominally”, joining sentiments with the Congress, whose Goa unit has written to the EC, besides the NSUI, against releasing the film.
Recently, noted historian and writer Ramchandra Guha had posed what the EC was doing when releasing such a promotional film would be a violation of the poll code. Another noted writer and Mr. Swapan Dasgupta joined issue with Mr. Guha saying fully sanitizing the poll process from political influences was unrealistic. It is for the EC to take a final call on this issue....