The controversy over superstar Rajinikanth travelling to Jaffna in Sri Lanka to inaugurate 150 houses built for displaced Tamils has now become a legal battle. This after Lyca Productions issued a legal notice to Thamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi leader Velmurugan for his defamatory comments broadcast on a Tamil news channel.
In the legal notice sent to Velmurugan, Lyca Productions’ advocates allege that the political leader had stated that the production house was in “nexus with former Sri Lankan President Mr Rajapaksa”. Denying that Lyca Productions had any association with Mahinda Rajapaksa and the Sri Lankan government, the legal notice states that Velmurugan’s comments had defamed the production house and had caused financial loss.
Demanding a compensation of Rs 10 crore and an unconditional apology, a copy of the notice was sent to all media houses on Sunday.
Rajinikanth had cancelled his April 9 visit to Sri Lanka, bowing to pressure from political outfits like VCK, MDMK and Vedlmurugan’s TVK. They had opposed his participating in the inauguration of the houses, which was built by Lyca Productions’ Gnanam Foundation, on the grounds that it would be a tacit endorsement of the Sri Lankan government, which has consistently denied the rights of Lankan Tamils.
Rajinikanth had on Saturday issued a 2-page letter stating that he could not fully accept the reasoning of those opposing his visit.
A day later, Gnanam Foundation issued a press release stating, “We are saddened by the development of a negative environment surrounding the aid programmes of a charity to further the political gain of some elements. We do not want the Superstar subjected to an uncomfortable and embarrassing situation.” It also hit out at political leaders for “repeatedly spreading fabricated and baseless rumours” at the behest of its business rivals.
Rajinikanth’s upcoming film 2.0 is being bankrolled by Lyca Productions.
(Content provided by Digital Native)