The movie is based on a book written by 'Auto' Chandran. 'Lock up' narrates Chandran's experiences with police brutality.

Movie based on Coimbatore auto-driver brutalized by police goes to Venice
news Tuesday, September 08, 2015 - 12:22

Tamil film industry's latest badge of honour, a movie called Visaranai, is special not just because it is the first Tamil film to be featured in the Venice Film Festival's competetive category, but also since it has roots in the experiences of a humble auto-driver who was tortured and maimed to death for no reason, and survived the brutality of the police to write about it.

The movie is based on a book written by 'Auto' Chandran. 'Lock up' narrates Chandran's experiences with police brutality, having himseld suffered through in Guntur in Andhra Pradesh several years ago. He and two of his friends were picked by the police or no reason, he says, and tortured for several days and then let off.



Auto Chandran

"In this book Lock Up, I have tried to record my experiences in what happened in that 8 X 10 feet room. I have tried to record what happens in every prison and police station and the kind of harassment meted out to known and unknown people. I was beaten up for 13 days. It is not a day to day basis but a minute by minute recording of what I was subjected to," Chandran told the media before taking the flight to Venice to attend the film festival. "I was not educated or literate. I just started to write because I read a lot. After 26 years I wanted to record what happened in the lock up. This is a record of a vagabond," he says.

"The police pick up people on the streets when they realise they have no one to come to their rescue. Then they take them to the police station and start their atrocities. First they want you to surrender, they beat you up and then they want him to confess the crime. Once the beating begins, the person believes it is completely difficult for him to survive this. He develops some sort of fear and he comes to the conclusion that I should confess the crime so I can escape the torture by these cops," he says, narrating what he has learned over the years through personal experience.


The director of the movie, Vetri Maraan, says that the movie is beyond just Chandran's incident, "This film is based on chandrakumar's book lock up. It is on his own experiences when he was locked up in a police station for 15 days where he was wrongly arrested on suspicion. It's not an isolated incident. It has global relevance because of the police method. I personally feel that as a system/ there are good individuals in the police system. But very often the police system fails. That's what the film is about," he says.

“It is such a big thing; despite being just an auto-rickshaw driver, Chandran learnt to study life in all its facets and achieve an ability to present it in lucid writing for all to understand,” local resident Su Panaiswamy told Hindustan Times.

Watch the trailer of the movie here