Features Friday, February 13, 2015 - 05:30
The News Minute | February 13, 2015 | 1.24 pm IST YouTube has taken down a Malayalam film which allegedly violates its policies on hate speech. But the rationalists’ associations are not going to be quiet about it. Prabhuvinte Makkal (Prabhu’s Children) was produced and directed by Sajeevan Anthikkad, a first time film maker. The film was released in 2012 and has been screened across the country in colleges and other events. Through the lives of Prabhu and his children, the film discusses religion and its overt manifestation in the form of rituals and worship, but does not question religious faith itself. Sajeevan Anthikkad told The News Minute that the film had been uploaded on the YouTube channel Kerala Freethinkers Forum a month ago, but has now been removed after it was flagged by users. In an email statement, YouTube said: “The YouTube community has flagged one or more of your videos as inappropriate. Once a video is flagged, it is reviewed by the YouTube Team against our community guidelines. Upon review, we have determined that the following video contains content in violation of these guidelines, and have been disabled: “Prabhuvinte Makkal Full Movie (Malayalam).” However, Anthikkad argues that the film was given U (Unrestricted Public Exhibition) certification by the Central Board for Film Certification, so there was nothing objectionable in it. He says that certain people and groups on Facebook and YouTube trawl through content in a bid to enforce censorship. He said that in three weeks, after the film had been uploaded on YouTube, Prabhuvinte Makkal had been viewed 1.25 lakh times. President of the Federation of Indian Rationalists’ Associations Narendra Nayak said that it “censorship” and was “totally unacceptable”. He said that the FIRA would take it up with YouTube and that they would continue to show the film as it had not been censored by Indian authorities. The film traces the life of Prabhu’s son Siddharthan, who was deeply religious in his youth but becomes disillusioned after he comes in contact with a godman who he discovers is only pretending to be a devout person for his own vested interest. Later, he returns to him hometown and family in Kerala only to discover that his own father was falling prey to a similar man. Thus begins a crusade against the godman and Siddharthan and his brother and friend begin to expose the man and others like him. Nayak says the film is based on the life of B Premanand, a rationalist from Tamil Nadu. Premanand’s most famous challenge was to Sathya Sai Baba, against whom, he had once filed a case for manufacturing gold in violation of the law. Read- A list of 'obscene' words Censor Board has reportedly banned, and it is a puzzling one Tweet

Show us some love! Support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.