Many theatres were forced to shut down, people were asked to go back and not watch the dubbed movie

Will burn down theatres Protests against screening dubbed movie spread across Karnataka Yennai Arindhaal's dubbing into Sathyadev IPS is at the centre of a storm; Courtesy: YouTube
news Film Friday, March 03, 2017 - 13:43

The dubbing row, which resurfaced after powerful opposition from veteran Kannada film stars, has had its rippling effect across Karnataka.

The state witnessed protests on Friday against the release of 'Sathyadev IPS', the Kannada dubbed version of Ajith’s Tamil movie 'Yennai Arindhaal', across theatres in Karnataka.

The ban on dubbing movies in other languages to Kannada was put in place many years ago, when the Kannada film industry was still in its infancy. 

In spite of many activists asking for a lift on the ban, most Kannada actors and groups are against it.

Members of pro-Kannada organisations, including Kannada Rakshaka Vedike and Kannada Janapada Vedike, along with Vatal Nagraj protested outside the Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce.

Actor Jaggesh, who had, on Thursday, threatened to set fire to cinema hall which chose to screen the film, encouraged pro-Kannada activists to “carry on their good work”.

In a tweet, Jaggesh wrote, “I am so proud of my Kannada-loving boys, who are carrying forward my call for protest. They are the true soldiers of Kannada. They are not advocating the cause like social media tigers but have actually gone to the theatres to stop the screening and I thank them.”

Over 100 activists protested near Mysore Bank Circle in Bengaluru. Angry protestors shouted slogans and threatened to set movie theatre on fire and pelt stones at cinema halls that chose to screen the dubbed movie.

Protests across state

A few protesters locked down Movieland cinema hall in Gandhinagar and took down the flex banner. They left the premise only after the theatre owners assured them that the movie would not be screened.

Nataraj and Sampige theatres in Bengaluru, stopped the movie screening after threats of protest.

“We will set fire to all theatres that choose to screen Sathyadev IPS. They have no concern for the workers in the Kannada Film industry. We cannot support it so we will take whatever measures to stop them. Why not promote films made in Kannada?” Vatal Nagraj questioned.

However, in Mangaluru, around 15 people bought tickets to watch the film at Suchitra theatre as there were no protests.

“Not many people came to watch the film. It is because of the protests that are happening across Karnataka. Around 15 people bought tickets for the 12.00 pm show,” a source said.

In Belagavi, Koppala, Mysuru, Raichur and Hubballi, Kannada Rakshana Vedike activists protested outside theatres where the movie was to be screened.

Theatre owners have assured angry protestors that the movie will not be screened.

“In Hubballi, Kannada Rakshana Vedike activists locked up a theatre located on Station Road, tore posters and set the flex banner on fire,” Hubballi SP said.

Over 50 policemen were deployed at the spot. After a brief meeting between the protestors, police and the theatre owner, the protestors went away.

In Belagavi, Kannada Rakshana Vedike activists distributed roses to people who had gone to watch the film at Heera theatre and asked them to join the protest against dubbed films.

In Koppala, activists from the same group stood at the entrance of Shiva theatre and took to stopping people from watching the film.

“People were told to turn around and walk away or face dire consequences,” said an official at Shiva theatre.


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