Kerala CM Vijayan backs film director Kamal in national anthem row

Kozhikode: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday came out in support of noted film director and Chalachitra Academy Chairman Kamal over his alleged remarks against the national anthem at IFFK in Thiruvananthapuram.

Activists of Yuva Morcha, BJP’s youth wing, had on December 14 burnt Kamal’s effigy in protest against his alleged remarks on playing the national anthem before every show at IFFK.

They had also allegedly addressed Kamal as ‘Kamaluddin’ and termed him “anti-national”.

Speaking at an awards ceremony in Kozhikode, Vijayan alleged that the Sangh Parivar was behind the protests and that an attempt was being made to communalise the issue and derive political mileage out of it.

“The act of addressing Kamal as Kamaludeen only shows deep religious intolerance which will not work in Kerala. The government will take action against it. The Sangh Parivar’s certificate is not needed for Kamal,” he said.

The issue had come into focus at the recently concluded International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) after police took 12 persons into custody on December 14 for showing disrespect to the national anthem. They reportedly refused to stand up while the anthem was being played.

The activists had also charged that Kamal was behind selecting controversial Malayalam film “Ka Bodyscapes” which they alleged insulted the Hindu religion.

Speaking at another function got up to inaugurate the Panniyankara Rail Overbridge, constructed by Delhi Metrorail Corporation (DMRC) in the city, Vijayan stressed the need for Kerala to become self-reliant?in the construction sector for the overall development of the state.

He said the state cannot continue to depend on outside agencies for executing its developmental projects. Vijayan also praised DMRC Principal Advisor E?Sreedharan, saying that bureaucrats should emulate him to aim at self sufficiency in executing the projects.