ED to probe ‘Manjummel Boys’ producers for alleged money laundering

In May, the Kerala police had submitted its report to the Kerala High Court finding the accused–Soubin Shahir, Shawn Antony, and Babu Shahir–guilty of serious financial fraud.
Poster of Manjummel Boys
Poster of Manjummel BoysIMDB
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The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has issued a notice to the three producers of the Malayalam blockbuster Manjummel Boys—Soubin Shahir, Shawn Antony, and Babu Shahir. According to media reports, the three accused have been summoned by the ED at its Kochi office. The ED has registered an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) against the producers due to a report submitted by the Maradu police station in Ernakulam to the Kerala High Court on May 29. Maradu police told the court that they had found producers had committed financial fraud. Earlier in April, the police had registered an FIR based on the complaint of one of the film's investors Siraj Valiyathara Hameed.

In June, Maradu police had also told TNM that Siraj, who invested Rs 7 crore in the film on the promise of receiving 40% of the net profit, has not received his profit share nor his full investment from the producer trio. According to the police, Siraj has received only Rs 50 lakhs of his total investment, even after the film became a massive hit and made about Rs 250 crores.

In November 2023, the three producers signed a contract with  Siraj, who agreed to invest Rs 7 crore for the production of the film for a 40 per cent share of the net profit. After the film became a hit, Siraj alleged that the producers failed to keep their word as he approached a commercial court, seeking action against the producers. The court, at the time, issued an ex-parte order attaching the accounts of Parava Films–the film production banner. Siraj had then filed a criminal complaint with Maradu police, alleging that the producers had cheated him.

Separately, in May this year, the three producers received a legal notice from Tamil music maestro Ilaiyaraaja for the use of his song ‘Kanmani Anbodu Kadhalan’ from Gunaa (1991). The hit-song, which continues to be a popular number across generations of south Indians, was re-used in Manjummel Boys, creating another wave of affection for the song. The producers had responded at the time that they had acquired legal rights from the two companies that owned the rights to the song in various languages—Pyramid Music and Sreedevi Sounds. 

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