Director Pa Ranjith of "Kaala", "Kabali" and "Madras" fame recently learnt a sobering lesson that he can't express his opinions publicly as he sees fit.

During an event held at Thirupanandhal in Thanjavur by the Blue Panthers Party, he brazenly criticised the famous Chola King, Rajaraja Chola, and claimed that king's reign was a dark time for Tamil Nadu.

The great king was known for his military conquests, and the Chola kingdom stretched from medieval Tamil Nadu, parts of northern India, two thirds of Sri Lankan territory, Maldives and parts of East Asia, between 985 and 1014 CE.

He was a follower of Shaivism but was tolerant towards other faiths and had several temples for Vishnu constructed and encouraged the construction of the Buddhist Chudamani Vihara at the request of the Srivijaya king Sri Maravijayatungavarman.

The director claimed that the lands of the people were taken away, and the women were ill treated. This did not go down well with the public and cases were filed against him in two police stations.

One of the complaints was filed by Bala, a former Thanjavur district secretary of the Hindu Makkal Katchi. The Thirupanandal police registered a case and Ranjith had applied for anticipatory bail to avoid an arrest.

The IPC sections deal with charges of wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot - if rioting be committed-if not committed and promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony.

During the court hearing, Chennai high court's Madurai branch judge Bharathidasan reminded Pa Ranjith that even though there is freedom of speech, there is still a limit to what should be appropriately spoken. He also questioned the intention of the director when he spoke about the kings seizing lands of lower castes. He demanded Ranjith to submit a report with an explanation.

Source: India Glitz
Photo Credit: The Hindu, The Indian Express & Scroll India