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Right-wing group vandalises film set in front of temple in Kerala

Right-wing group vandalises film set in front of temple in Kerala

Published:25 May 2020

Expressing anguish over the attack, actor Tovino Thomas, who is starring in the film, said the "contractual set" of film "Minnal Murali" was destroyed by a group of "racialists".

Kochi/Thiruvananthapuram | Police on Monday launched a probe into the alleged vandalism of a cinema set near Kochi by a fringe right-wing group on Sunday, with Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan reacting sharply over the incident and warning of strong action against the culprits.
Expressing anguish over the attack, actor Tovino Thomas, who is starring in the film, said the "contractual set" of the film "Minnal Murali" was destroyed by a group of "racialists".
Police said an investigation has been launched into the incident after registering a case against a group of people who were allegedly involved in damaging the set erected for the Malayalam film.
In a Facebook post, Hari Palode, the leader of a right-wing group AHP, congratulated a district leader of the "Rashtriya Bajrang Dal" for destroying the set raised on the sand bed of the Periyar river in Kalady, near a temple.
He has also posted photos of the alleged vandalism on his Facebook page.
The incident drew a sharp reaction from Vijayan.
"Such an act should not have happened in our state," he told reporters in Thiruvananthapuram in response to a query.
Referring to incidents of targeting film sets and crew of movies in other parts of the country, allegedly by certain 'communal elements' as part of implementing their communal agenda, the Chief Minister said, "This was not accepted by the people of this country."
"All these are done by a particular sect of communal elements in our country.
A common sentiment prevails against them in the country," he said.
Noting that the movie set was constructed in March by spending lakhs of Rupees and shooting was stopped due to the lockdown, Vijayan sought to know "what religious sentiment was hurt" due to the erection of the film set there.
"Everyone knows why such a set was created.
Kerala is not a place for such communal elements to indulge in vandalism.
Strong action will be taken against this act," Vijayan said.
Actor Thomas said the film's first schedule at Wayanad had been in progress when the construction of the set for the second schedule began at Kalady.
It was carried out by art director Manu Jagad and team, under special instructions by stunt choreographer Vlad Rimburg.
"For this, we had the rightful permission from the authorities concerned.
And as we were about to start shooting in this set, which was built at a considerable cost, the whole country went into lockdown, following which our shoot was paused, just like all others", he said.
"It is during this prevailing uncertainty that this contractual set was destroyed by a group of racialists.
The reasons they cite for this unceremonious act are not understood to our senses till now," the actor wrote on his Facebook page.
"We have heard of movie sets being vandalised by religious fanatics in northern parts of the country.
Now it is happening to us right here.
It has caused us a lot of distress and even more anxiety.
We have decided to go ahead with the legal proceedings," he said.
AHP General Secretary Hari Palode said complaints were filed with the authorities against erecting the film set near a temple.
The left cultural organisation "Purogamana Kala Sahithya Sangham" condemned the incident.


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