varnachitram

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Freedom of Expression

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The intolerance police is in action again. This time it is against a Malayalam song Manikya Malaraya Poovi from the film Oru Adaar Love. Here are some news snippets:

1.‘Fatwa’ seeks song removal in Oru Adaar Love. “The film-maker should immediately remove the geet (song) from the film. The government should prevent the screening of the film till the song is removed,” the reply states. The document was signed by chief mufti of Jamia Nizamia Mufti Mohammed Azeemuddin.

2.Oru Adaar Love: Hyderabad seminary issues fatwa against Malayalam song over Prophet reference. “Our objection is not for the film, but a song that references the Prophet and his wife. The director should have used some other characters to depict the couple’s relationship. Why did he take the name of the Prophet? That is why we issued this fatwa seeking that the song be dropped from the film,” said Jamia Nizamia secretary Ahmed Ali.

The objection is against the song which speaks of the romance between Prophet Muhammad and his first wife Khadija.
Here is a translation of the lyrics:

A woman like the pearl flower
Her highness- Khadeja Beebi
In the holy city of Macca
She lived like a Queen

A woman like the pearl flower
Her highness Khadeja Beebi
In the holy city of Macca
She lived like a Queen

Asked Khathimun Nabi
Sent as in charge of trade
At the first sight of him
She desired him

After completing the expedition
Blessed Rasulullah came back
To marry the Prophet
was the Bibi desire

A woman like the pearl flower
Her highness Khadeja Beebi
In the holy city of Macca
She lived like a Queen

We don’t understand what’s the problem with these words. It is beautiful and romantic. It does not insult anyone. It is not like M F Hussain drawing nude pictures of Hindu goddesses in the name of art.
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But then India is a land of competitive intolerance. Every day there is someone who is offended about something. Look at the jokers who went violent over Padmavati. In some occasion the dumbness of the intolerant people show through. For example, here is one news snippet. On most occasions dumbos like Karni Sena are tools of other political players.

A local organisation has lodged a police complaint against Malayalam actress Priya Prakash Varrier and film director Omar Lulu for allegedly hurting sentiments of the Muslim community through a song in their forthcoming movie “Oru Adaar Love”. However, police have not registered an FIR in the matter yet. The complaint against the two was filed at Jinsi police station by a group of people under the aegis of Janjagran Samithi. “This is a deliberate effort to hurt the religious sentiments of Muslims. We demand that a case under IPC section 295 of the IPC should be registered against actress Priya Varrier, director Omar Lulu and producers of the film,” Samithi president Mohsin Ahmed told PTI.

Why is there a complaint against actress Priya Varrier? Why not against the kid who made Priya wink? There are some thousand kids appearing in that song. Why not against all of them? Why not against the singer or the music director? It’s all about publicity.

Now here is the funny thing which these Einsteins did not know. This is not a song which was written for the movie. It was written in 1978 and is popular among Muslims in Kerala, who sing it during the occasion of marriage. No one in Kerala thinks it’s offensive. So the fundamentalists who are opposing this song seem to be clueless as well.

The film makers have rightfully said that they will not delete the song. That is the right decision. If they are forced to delete the song, then we hope, the people who return awards back to the government to get ready.

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