The Madras High Court on Thursday quashed a First Information Report (FIR) against Tamil actor Suriya and Director of Jai Bhim movie, T.J. Gnanavel.
The FIR was registered at the Velachery police station, Chennai for allegedly hurting the sentiments of the Vanniyar community by portraying it in a bad light in the movie, ‘Jai Bhim’.
The FIR was lodged on May 17 at the instance of the Advocate of Rudra Vanniyar Sena, K. Santosh. Justice N. Satish Kumar of the Madras High Court allowed a joint petition filed by the actor and director to quash the FIR registered against them.
The petitioners in their plea stated that the movie ‘Jai Bhim’ was based upon a case in which retired Judge of Madras High Court, Justice K. Chandru had conducted while he was a practicing lawyer. It stated that except for his name and that of the Inspector General of Police, Perumalswamy, the names of all other characters were changed.
The actor and director of the movie said that they did not want to use the real names of the characters as most of them had undergone the full prison term and were still alive. The movie was given an ‘A’ certificate by the Censor Board and was released only on the OTT platform, thereby limiting the number of viewers who could watch it.
The movie, according to the petitioners, was well received across the world and was appreciated by all sections of the people without any caste or creed affiliations. The movie also won several acclaims and awards including the Dadasaheb Phalke Film Festival award, the JFW Award, and the Boston International Film Festival Award.
The filmmakers said that the Chairman of the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry P.S. Amalraj also wrote a letter to the director appreciating the movie, ‘Jai Bhim’.
The petitioners said that despite all these accolades and positive responses, the complainant had approached the Metropolitan Magistrate court in Saidapet, Chennai, and obtained an order on May 6 to register an FIR against the filmmakers.
It may be noted that the Rudra Vanniyar Sena and the complainant were aggrieved over the villain being named ‘Gurumurthy’ and a calendar of the Vanniyar Sangam was hanging behind his seat in a scene. This has led to the Vanniyar community coming out against the movie actor Suriya and director, T.S. Gjanavel.