Film critic Mahesh Kathi has been harassed by self-professed fans of Pawan Kalyan for calling his party ‘authoritarian’.

Pawan Kalyan needs to break silence on his fans trolling Mahesh Kathi Activists
news Social Media Sunday, September 03, 2017 - 17:08

Even after two weeks, actor-turned-politician Pawan Kalyan continues to remain silent over the organized trolling of film critic Mahesh Kathi by his self-professed fans.

While Tamil stars like Ajith and Vijay have released statements urging fans to not harass and abuse others in their name, Pawan Kalyan has chosen to not condemn their behaviour.  

The actor recently thanked his fans on Twitter for wishing him on his birthday, but remained mum on the issue of the online harassment.

Mahesh Kathi, however, has received support from several activists.  

Suman Damera, PhD scholar, and president of the Dalit Students Union, University of Hyderabad, said the actor’s silence suggests that he’s been passive about the attack.

“It’s been weeks, and the harassment continues on Mahesh (Anna), who is a Dalit. Even film persons are silent. This exhibits how polarized the film industry, which is dominated by Kammas and Kapus. When fans harass an individual, Pawan should have immediately condemned it or done something to stop the attack. He cannot remain quiet, that too when he has political ambitions. This shows his immaturity,” Suman noted.

Pointing out that in a democracy, everyone has the freedom of expression, Suman argued that Mahesh is right in his opinion.

“You can’t escape criticism by unleashing a troll attack on an individual. No one in the state knows what is Jana Sena’s ideology or agenda. This is a valid question, which he can’t evade for long,” he observed.

Social activist Pasunoori Ravinder termed the attack on Mahesh is unfortunate and said that the actor should have condemned or given his stand on the issue. “How long will he evade criticism. People from both Andhra and Telangana should definitely condemn this cyber bullying and threatening of Mahesh. Even the actor should issue a public apology, in this regard,” he said.  

It all began on August 19 when Mahesh Kathi gave an interview to a Telugu One, YouTube channel criticising Pawan Kalyan and his party Jana Sena. Stating that there is no correlation between the actor’s words and his actions, Mahesh said the Jana Sena has no agenda.

“Pawan Kalyan is a one-man show in his party. There are no other leaders or representatives of the party. Jana Sena is an authoritarian party,” Mahesh told Telugu One.

He also pointed out that the actor tweets in supports of something, only when he is free. “What sort of party or leadership is it?” Mahesh asked.

Following his remarks, Mahesh was subject to harassment on social media by several proclaiming to be fans of the actor with many participating in organised bullying.

Mahesh’s contact number was also shared amongst fan groups and fan pages, asking them to troll and abuse him.

This was the second such instance of online harassment Mahesh has been subject to by PK’s fans. He was earlier trolled for his review of Katamaruyudu starring PK.

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