Controversies chase superstar Kamal Haasan or he inadvertently courts trouble whenever a major film of his is about to release. Like his previous Vishwaroopam that ran into trouble with minority community holding up its release for over a month, Kamal Haasan's latest offering - Uttama Villain - has caught the attention of Hindu organisations. They are demanding a ban, as they claim it hurts the sentiments of the majority community.
In the forefront of the ban-seeking is Vishwa Hindu Parishad's Tamil Nadu unit. It has lodged a formal complaint with the commissioner of police alleging that the portrayal of Lord Vishnu in a song had objectionable content that would outrage the sentiments of the Hindu community.
The song, Iraniyan Nadagam, belittles the conversation between Bhakta Prahalad and his father Hiranyakasipa and is sure to outrage Lord Vishnu followers, the organisation added.
VHP member KL Sathiyamoorthy formally lodged a complaint with the police commissioner on Monday in which he said these conversations were in bad taste and the film ought to be banned. He said the lyrics will upset followers of Lord Vishnu.
Arjun Sampath, a senior leader of Hindu Makkal Katchi, a Hindu organisation, too felt that there was strength in VHP's argument and added that a filmmaker of Kamal Haasan's stature should respect the sentiments and feelings of sections of society.
Uttama Villain is scheduled for a May 1 release and has already got the certification from the film censor board.
Barring a state government intervention, there is little to stop the film from hitting the theatres. Film trade analysts insist that there seems to be no major danger for Uttama Villain's release. So far, VHP representatives have not got any response from the police to the complaint. The complainant Sathiyamoorthy said they would press for the ban, unless the filmmakers agreed to modifications.
Ramesh Arvind, who directed the Kamal Haasan starrer, told Hindustan Times that there was absolutely nothing derogatory in the film or any content that would hurt the sentiments of any section of the society.
"I as the director of the film assure you that the film is clean and it has references to epic tales, which we all as children were exposed to. The content is the same, if only our makeup of charactors is different. But that should be no cause for any complaint," he said.
If there was anything like that, the film censor board would not have cleared it, Arvind said adding 'we have got a U certification and the film is set for May 1 release'.