Mammootty receives support from Kerala politicians over online harassment row

Mammootty. Photo: Manorama Online

Thiruvananthapuram: Politicians from the Left and Congress parties in Kerala have expressed their support for Malayalam actor Mammootty, who has been targeted with online harassment by some right-wing sympathisers. The controversy stems from a 2022 film called "Puzhu," which some social media users labelled as anti-Brahminical.

Some of them have even used Mammootty's birth name, Muhammed Kutty, in their attacks on the National Award-winning actor. "Puzhu," a psychological drama directed by Ratheena PT, has become the centre of this dispute. The recent online interview given by the director's husband sparked the controversy. He claimed the film targeted a specific community and criticised Mammootty for his involvement.

Rubbishing the social media campaign against the legendary actor, several persons including state Ministers V Sivankutty and K Rajan and AICC General Secretary KC Venugopal came out in support of Mammootty. Senior CPM leader and General Education Minister V Sivankutty put up a Facebook post sharing a photo of him with the actor, who has won three national awards, among many other recognitions. "Mammootty is Malayalees' pride," the minister said in the FB post. CPI leader and Revenue Minister K Rajan also described Mammootty as the "Pride of Kerala and Malayalees".

The minister alleged that "Sangh Parivar politics" was behind such campaigns and said that such propaganda would not reap its desired results in the state. "This is Kerala," he pointed out to those behind the campaign. Recalling a similar campaign unleashed against eminent director Kamal some time ago, the minister said "the Sanghi politics of calling Mammootty as Mohammed Kutty, Kamal as Kamaluddin and Vijay as Joseph Vijay (top Tamil film star who has a large fan following in Kerala) will not reap any result here."

Sharing similar views, AICC General Secretary K C Venugopal also strongly supported Mammootty and said the secular society of the state would not support such propaganda. He said no matter how hard they try to brand a person who has clear political views and acting skills, the people of the state won't support them. In an FB post, the Congress leader further said that it is the duty of Kerala society to take care of the actor without being affected by the "poison of hate campaigns".

A person like Mammootty cannot be confined to the compartments of religion and caste, he said, adding that vested interests are doing so with a clear political agenda. "Mammootty is being Mohammed Kutty only in the contemptuous minds of those hate campaigners," the leader added. The actor is yet to react to the controversy.
(With PTI Inputs)

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