Following pressure from the ruling AIADMK government in Tamil Nadu, three cuts from AR Murugadoss’ Deepavali release Sarkar have been made after state-wide protests from the ruling party. The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has approved these alterations.
According to a release sent to movie theatres after the deletion of controversial scenes, three cuts have been made in the movie. The scene which shows the director of the movie AR Murugadoss throwing a mixie and grinder into the fire has been cut out of the film. The CBFC also approved muting of the words ‘Komala’ in Komalavalli, dialogues which spoke about ‘Podhuppanithurai’ (Public Works Department), and ‘56 varusham’ (56 years), according to the release. Head of the Tamil Nadu Theatres Association Abirami Ramanathan confirmed about the cuts carried out in the movie.
The ‘voluntary’ cuts come after the AIADMK staged protests across the state against screening the movie. In some places, the protestors resorted to tearing the banners of Vijay erected by the fans inside the theatre premises and shouting slogans demanding Murugadoss’ arrest.
The AIADMK protesters had demanded that the movie not be screened till the controversial scenes, which they alleged were an insult to the late AIADMK Chief J Jayalalithaa, were removed from the movie. They were referring to the scene in the film where freebies like a mixer and grinder were thrown into the fire. These items were the freebies announced by former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa when she came to power in 2011.
They also opposed the usage of the name ‘Komalavalli’ for the antagonist, played by Varalaxmi Sarathkumar, claiming that Komalavalli was Jayalalithaa’s birth name and that the movie shows her in a bad light.
Sarkar, starring Vijay, was released on November 6 worldwide. It attracted severe criticism from AIADMK with the law minister C Ve Shanmugam threatening legal action against the movie if the controversial scenes are not deleted.
On Thursday, a complaint was also filed with the Chennai city police commissioner urging him to take action against director AR Murugadoss under section 124A (Sedition) of the IPC for insulting the state government. AR Murugadoss moved the Madras High Court on Friday which has given him protection from arrest till November 27.