Bengaluru: Kannada film artists have flayed the decision of the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists (AMMA) to re-induct actor Dileep, who is facing trial in the actress attack case. A letter signed by 50 film personalities, including the sister of slain journalist Gauri Lankesh, has been sent to AMMA general secretary Edavela Babu.
Members of the Kannada Film Industry (KFI) and the Film Industry for Rights and Equality (FIRE) have signed the letter, which expresses the opposition of the members and their disappointment over the matter. “AMMA has implemented several laudable initiatives. However, we are shocked and pained over the decision of the AMMA general body to re-induct Dileep. This decision was unfortunate. Dileep was expelled from AMMA over facing legal procedures related to abducting the actress. The charge sheet mentions sexual assault also,” said the letter. It explained that KFI and FIRE supported the constitutional right of a person to be considered innocent till he is proven guilty. “But the accused in this case has not been exonerated. The victim also is a member of AMMA. In such a situation, admitting the accused back into the organization was untimely,” said the letter.
People involved in the cinema field should prove to be a model for society in the present times when issues like women’s security and gender equality have become topics of public debate at the national level. In this backdrop, AMMA should be prepared to keep Dileep out of the organization till he is cleared of the charges.
Kannada film artists will extend all support to AMMA for ensuring the safety and security of all members of the cinema industry. A suitable decision is awaited from AMMA in this regard, said the letter which has been signed by Sruthi Hariharan, Prakash Rai, Rupa Iyer, Rakshit Shetty, Sraddha Srinath, Diganth, Rupa Nataraj, Meghana Raj, Sangeetha Bhatt, Kavya Shetty, Samyukta Hornad, Bhavana Rao, Nivedita, Veena Sundar and Chetan, among others.
Network of women in media (NWMI), a collective of women journalists in India, has already expressed its opposition to AMMA’s decision.