Naveen Hidayath, Lenin Bharathi call out Jeyamohan’s jibes on Manjummel Boys

Many pointed out the apparent hypocrisy of the writer to call out Malayalam films for romanticising alcohol and drug usage while similar portrayals are present in Tamil films too.
Writer Jeyamohan
Writer Jeyamohan
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Criticising Tamil writer Jeyamohan’s jibes at the hit Malayalam movie Manjummel Boys, Tamil filmmaker Naveen Hidayath, said that there is no difference between sanghis who refer to Tamils as ‘porukkis’ (loafers) and the author. The filmmaker added, “The sanghi who used the term ‘tamil porukkis’ and this sanghi who said ‘malayali porukkis’ are frogs in the same gutter. When Tamilians go to Kerala or when Malayalis come to Tamil Nadu, they speak in Tamil to us. Drunkards are everywhere!” 

Several people in the industry and on social media also came down on Jeyamohan for his tirade against Malayalis under the guise of criticising the film. They also pointed out the apparent hypocrisy of the writer to call out Malayalam films for romanticising alcohol and drug usage while similar portrayals are present in Tamil films as well. 

Tamil filmmaker Lenin Bharathi said Jeyamohan’s brain had turned into soured batter which led him to use the term ‘Malayali porukkis’. He added, “Dear Jeymohan, your brain had turned into soured batter and so are the perverse words like ‘Kerala porukkis’ and Malayali drunkard porukkis’ that you have spewed.” 

Writing on his blog about Manjummel Boys, which was based on a real life incident where a young man fell into a pit at the famous Guna caves in Kodaikanal, Jeyamohan accused Malayalis of being “drunk scoundrels” and littering tourist places like Ooty and Kodiakanal. He added, “At least 10 times, I have seen on the roads of Ooty, Kodaikanal, Kutralam, Malayali drunkard scoundrels fighting, throwing out liquor bottles, and travelling with vomit on the sides of their vehicles. They have proudly depicted this in the movie too.” 

One of Jeyamohan’s famous novels Yanai Doctor (Elephant Doctor) was based on him seeing elephants die after stepping on shards of glass from bottles on the roadside. 

The writer went on to repeatedly call Malayalis porukkis and added that they do not know a single word in another language and expect everyone to speak to them in Malayalam. He also ranted about how they ruin weddings and forests and would understand “beatings” only if Tamil police beat some of them. 

Jeyamohan also claimed that Malayalam cinema always represents happiness as something that is achieved when people drink and fight with each other. He goes on to allege that Ernakulam in particular is the center of drug addiction, and even Malayalam heroes are caught in drug cases. Naming a few films like Kili Poi, Ozhivu Divasathe Kali, Vedi Vazhipaadu and Jallikattu, Jeyamohan says that such works, without any "sensibility", normalise drugs and sex work. 

"If Kerala has a government that cares for the welfare of its people, they should take action against such filmmakers," Jeyamohan says. He does not spare even the real life person on whom the main character in Manjummel Boys is based, saying that instead of giving him a national award for bravery, he should have been thrown in jail.

Jeyamohan ended his blog with the comment that it will be good if such gangs do get trapped (like in the movie) and die sometimes, then “our forests will be saved” and “it will be a punishment given by nature.”

Malayalam actor Prakash Bare also criticised writer Jeyamohan for his tirade against Malayalis after watching Manjummel Boys. The actor said that sometimes Indian tourists do not behave ideally when they travel but it was uncalled for for Jeyamohan to single out Malayalis. He added, “His claim that Keralites refuse to learn other languages and insist on communicating solely in Malayalam is not only baseless but also reveals a deep-seated bias. This couldn't be further from the truth, as the Malayali culture embodies the ethos of adapting and embracing other languages and cultures, a trait beautifully encapsulated in the Malayalam adage, ‘Cheraye thinnunna naattil poyaal nadutthundam thinnanam’ (The Malayalam equivalent for ‘When in Rome, do as the Romans do’).” The actor further mentioned how a jibe like this from a writer like Jeyamohan was “surprising and disheartening”. 

Pointing out how Malayalis use Tamil as lingua franca even when communicating with other language speakers, Prakash added, “Interestingly, while Jeyamohan’s blog attacks Malayalis, he overlooks a key aspect of Mallu linguistic behaviour: many Keralites naturally use Tamil as a lingua franca when interacting with speakers of other Indian languages, such as Kannada, Telugu, Bengali, and even Hindi. It’s often quite funny but it underscores a special connection Malayalis enjoy with Tamil language.”

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