Jai Bhim row: PMK cadre barge into TN theatre, stop screening of Suriya film

On Monday, November 15, the Vanniyar Sangam issued a legal notice demanding that the makers of Jai Bhim remove scenes which they dubbed defamatory and sought Rs 5 crore in damages.
An empty theatre with a blank screen and empty seats
An empty theatre with a blank screen and empty seats
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The stand-off between the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) and actor Suriya over the issue of the latter's film Jai Bhim allegedly insulting the Vanniyar community escalated on Sunday, November 14, when a group of PMK cadres forced a theatre in Mayiladuthurai district in Tamil Nadu to stop screening a Suriya film. Sources said that a group of PMK cadres raised slogans outside the Peerless theatre on Park Avenue Road that was screening Vel, a Suriya film. According to reports, they even stormed into the theatre manager’s room, following which the management pulled out the film that was being screened.

The group, led by PMK's Mayiladuthurai district secretary Panneerselvam, also submitted a petition to Mayiladuthurai Superintendent of Police, demanding action against Suriya. Speaking to reporters, Pannerselvam, who said that the PMK would not allow any Suriya film to be screened in Mayiladuthurai, went on to announce a reward of Rs 1 lakh to anybody who assaults the actor when he visits the district.

Only days ago, a war of words had erupted between PMK chief Anbumani Ramadoss, who wrote a letter to Suriya, levelling allegations and demanding answers. Suriya had on Thursday responded, denying allegations and replying to all the questions asked.

"Neither my team, nor I have ever harboured any intention at any point in time to insult any individual or community as mentioned by you in your letter. I hope you are aware that corrections were carried out as soon as some people pointed out mistakes," Suriya said in his response.

Meanwhile, on Monday, November 15, the Vanniyar Sangam state president issued a legal notice to actor Suriya and TJ Gnanavel, the director of Jai Bhim demanding that the makers of the film tender an unconditional apology and remove scenes which they dubbed defamatory. The legal notice also asked those behind the film to “cease and desist from making or publishing any false, malicious and defamatory remarks against (the Vanniyar) community and its people.” The notice also sought damages in Rs 5 crore.

With IANS inputs

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