Tamil Nadu's Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) has now packed a campaign against Suriya's upcoming movie Etharkkum Thunindhavan after an episode of impasse and disruption against the actor's last movie 'Jai Bhim'. The party, which enjoys a strong voting base from the Vanniyar community, has been attacking the actor by alleging that the Jai Bhim movie had made disparaging scenes against the Vanniyar. Though Jai Bhim was a huge success, PMK has waged a war of words with Suriya and the team against such scenes, which were eventually removed.
Though the Jai Bhim team had reiterated its stance that the movie didn't defame the Vanniyar community, PMK has deliberately displayed its politics and propaganda over the movie. While its politics didn't disrupt Jai Bhim's global reach as it went near the stage of Oscars, PMK has now found a prospect of showcasing its allegiance towards the Vanniyar community by standing against Suriya's upcoming movie Etharkkum Thunindhavan, which will be hitting the big screens on March 10.
On Monday, Vijayvarman, the Cuddalore district secretary of PMK's student union, has written a letter to the Theatre Owners' Association in the district demanding not to screen Etharkkum Thunindhavan. In his letter, Vijayvarman has put PMK's stereotyped propaganda against Jai Bhim and that Suriya should publicly apologize to the Vanniyar community for degrading them in the movie. Having a talking point through Etharkkum Thunindhavan, PMK's demand has caught major attention, two days ahead of the release.
In his letter, Vijayvarman had claimed that Jai Bhim had attempted to malign the PMK and said that the police sub-inspector in the movie has been portrayed as a casteist and as a Vanniyar by showcasing the symbol of the community, Agni Kalasam, in his home. In the version of Vijayvarman, Jai Bhim had portrayed the entire Vanniyar community people as casteists. He stated that Jai Bhim aimed to create caste rifts between Vanniyar and Irular community people, who live in communal harmony.
He said, "Suriya has depicted the Vanniyar community insultingly and shown the community as people who indulge in atrocities. On behalf of PMK and the Vanniyar Sangam, I request that the films of actor Suriya (including Etharkkum Thunindhavan) should not be screened in the Cuddalore district until he (Suriya) publicly apologises to the people of the Vanniyar community for continuously portraying Vanniyars in a derogatory way and as violent people in his films."
While PMK's student union is voicing against Suriya's Etharkkum Thunindhavan, it is less likely that the release will face a major disruption in Cuddalore and across Tamil Nadu as the movie team has been seeing up the process of serving the movie for the fans in the theatres. Earlier, while responding to the allegations from PMK on Jai Bhim, Suriya said that no one associated with the film had any intentions of hurting any particular community. Jai Bhim is a feature film and not a documentary.
However, PMK has kept its propaganda alive and it has now been carried by the party's student union against Etharkkum Thunindhavan, which is bankrolled by Kalanithi Maran under the banner of Sun Pictures and helmed by Pandiraj. While Suriya plays the lead role as an advocate, Priyanka Arul Mohan, Vinay Rai, Sathyaraj, Rajkiran, Jayaprakash, MS Bhaskar, and Soori play important roles. D Imman has composed the music and Etharkkum Thunindhavan is the first big movie for Suriya to release in theatres after three years while his previous movies 'Soorarai Pottru' and 'Jai Bhim' had released directly on Amazon Prime.