On Saturday (April 10), a group of Hindu activists stopped the shooting of a film named ‘Neeyam Nadhi’ at Katampazhipuram near Sreekrishnapuram in the Palakkad district of Kerala. The film is being directed by three individuals namely Aashique, Shinu and Salman.
As per reports, the crew gathered outside the Vayilamkunnu temple premises and began the filming of the movie. One of the scenes showed a girl dressed in traditional Hindu attire exiting the temple and being attracted to a man of a different religion (Islam). Irked by the shenanigans outside the temple premises, a group of Hindu activists began protesting against the scene.
Reportedly, they also took offence to the display of green and red flags of the Muslim League and Student Federation of India (SFI) respectively outside the temple.
A film shooting in temple was stoped by Hindus in Kerala and media labelled them as Sanghis.— Pratheesh Viswanath (@pratheesh_Hind) April 11, 2021
Reality was it was a film glorifying love jehad and they used a pakistan kind of flag and actors wearing muslim ethnic wears inside temple. Cant encourage this. Will stop in future also. pic.twitter.com/zuzK04RFBa
They took objection to the storyline and pointed out the conspiracy in choosing Vayilamkunnu temple in Katampazhipuram for the shoot. As such, the filming was disrupted and the second scene of the film was abandoned. The film crew was escorted by the police to a different location. A case has been registered by the police and the investigation is now underway.
Kerala, Palakkad, Kadambajhipuram:— Kalu Singh Chouhan (@kschouhan94) April 10, 2021
An attempt to desecrate the Vayilamkunnu temple complex, the film was being shot between Hindu girl and Muslim boy promoting love jihad.
Film director Aashiq Shinu Salman
Hindu organization and BJP workers stop shooting pic.twitter.com/SZnUaRtfqE
Cops arrest 5 Hindu activists, scriptwriter comes in defence of the movie
Following the incident, the Sreekrishnapuram police arrested 5 people, namely, Sreejith, Sachithanandan, Subramanian, Babu, and Sabareesh. They were booked for illegal gathering, trying to ‘indulge in violence’ and trespassing on the set. While speaking about the incident, writer Salman Farris said, “The first shot shows a girl coming out of a temple after praying. When the crew were about to shoot the second scene where she is shown being attracted towards youth from a different religion, dressed in his traditional attire, walking on the road outside that the locals created problems.”
SFI, Muslim League flags used in the movie
He claimed that a 13-year-old girl was injured amidst the chaos. He also alleged that the chairs and camera stand was damaged. On being asked about the presence of SFI and Muslim League flags, Farris claimed that the flags were being dried for the shoot. He also claimed that the filming was being done outside the temple and that it should be accepted as a ‘work of art.’ He said that the temple authorities had given him permission to shoot the film, although not in writing. Farris said that he chose the location as the rent was ₹3000 per day as compared to the earlier location of Varikassery mana which was costing him ₹35,000 per day.
Temple authorities did not give permission for the filming
E Krishnadas, the BJP district President, said that no permission was given for the shooting of the film by the temple committee and the Devaswom Board. Deccan Herald reported that the executive officer of the Vayilamkunnu temple said that he was unaware of any permission granted for the shooting of the film. The temple authorities are planning to file a petition highlighting that the filming was done at the premises without prior permission.
E Krishnadas emphasised, “Moreover, the theme of the film hurts the religious sentiments of the temple devotees and most of the characters were dressed in traditional Muslim attire,” he said. The BJP leader said that they will continue to protest against the filming of ‘Neeyam Nadhi’.