Priya song angers war­riors of faith

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TROU­BLE is brew­ing for in­ter­net sen­sa­tion Priya Prakash Var­rier who has be­come an overnight star for her eye­brow dance and wink in a song se­quence. A group of young men from Hy­der­abad has filed a po­lice com­plaint against the song ‘Manikya Malaraya Poovi’ for al­legedly hurt­ing re­li­gious sen­ti­ments. Mum­bai-based Raza Academy too has ob­jected to the lyrics, claim­ing it con­tains some ob­jec­tion­able text men­tion­ing

Is­lam’s holy Prophet and his wife.

The song is part of the Malay­alam movie Oru Adaar Love in which the 18-year-old Var­rier is set to make her act­ing de­but. What cap­ti­vated

so­cial me­dia users are the teen’s smile and ex­pres­sions and the se­quence of her in­ter­ac­tion with the ac­tor play­ing her high-school crush. Sources say Priya was cho­sen to play a small role in the movie ini­tially, but it seems the di­rec­tor, im­pressed with her tal­ent, de­cided to make her one of the leads and for this, he is now re­work­ing the script.

The com­plaint in Hy­der­abad was filed at the Falaknuma po­lice sta­tion by busi­ness­man Za­heer Ali Khan, en­gi­neer­ing stu­dent Muqeeth Khan and oth­ers. Khan al­leged that the song’s lyrics hurt the sen­ti­ments

Com­plainants say lyrics hurt re­li­gious views

of Mus­lims and de­manded that ei­ther the song be re­moved from the film or its words be changed.

A clip from the song, fea­tur­ing Var­rier, has gone vi­ral on so­cial me­dia sites.

The com­plainants, how­ever, said they had not men­tioned the ac­tor’s name in their rep­re­sen­ta­tion be­fore the po­lice.

“We don’t have any ob­jec­tion against the ac­tors,” Khan said.

Po­lice said they had reg­is­tered a case. “Fol­low­ing the com­plaint, we took le­gal opin­ion and sub­se­quently a case un­der IPC sec­tion 295A (hurt­ing re­li­gious sen­ti­ments) has been reg­is­tered against the film's di­rec­tor, Omar Lulu,” said as­sis­tant com­mis­sioner of po­lice (Falaknuma divi­sion) Syed Fayaz.

As part of their in­ves­ti­ga­tion, the po­lice will take the opin­ion of some Is­lamic cler­ics on this af­ter get­ting a trans­la­tion of the song, he said. The film is slated to be re­leased later this year

“The song writ­ten by CMA Jab­bar is sung dur­ing mar­riages and ev­ery cel­e­bra­tion in Mal­abar re­gion of North Ker­ala. Mal­abar Mus­lims have been singing this song since 1978. If it was not ob­jec­tion­able then, how has it be­come ob­jec­tion­able now?” Lulu asked.

The song was launched on­line on Fe­bru­ary 9 and has gar­nered about 10,000,000 views on YouTube. Priya reg­is­tered on Twit­ter ear­lier this month, and has al­ready amassed a fol­low­ing of over 60,000.

On In­sta­gram, she has 2.5 mil­lion fol­low­ers, and got a blue tick. She also has a ver­i­fied of­fi­cial Face­book page.

Some so­cial me­dia users pointed out that the song is in fact a pop­u­lar Map­pila folk song, which cel­e­brates the mar­riage of the Prophet and his first wife.

Raza Academy has writ­ten a let­ter to CBFC chair­man Pra­soon Joshi and have asked him to block the re­leased video.

In the same let­ter they have cited that there is al­ready a FIR against the song in Hy­der­abad but due to slow pro­ce­dure no ac­tion has been taken against it so far.

We have ob­jec­tion over few words of this song. It’s hurt­ing the sen­ti­ments of our com­mu­nity. That is why we have writ­ten let­ter to CBFC chief. If they fail to do so, we will take this protest in le­gal way by con­sult­ing our lawyer. — KARZI AB­DUL REHMAN, RAZA ACADEMY ‘Mal­abar Mus­lims singing this song since 1978’

But CBFC should di­rect the con­cerned depart­ment to block the video, the academy says.

“We have ob­jec­tion over few words of this song. It’s hurt­ing the sen­ti­ments of our com­mu­nity. That is why we have writ­ten let­ter to CBFC chief. If they fail to do so, then we will take this protest in le­gal way by con­sult­ing our lawyer,” said Kari Ab­dul Rehman of Raza Academy.

(With in­puts from Mayuresh Gana­p­atye in Mum­bai and PTI)

Priya Prakash Var­rier

(Left) The Raza Academy let­ter to CBFC; (above) Priya Prakash Var­rier who reg­is­tered on Twit­ter early Fe­bru­ary has al­ready amassed over 60,000 fol­low­ers, 2.5 mil­lion on In­sta­gram and got a blue tick, and also a ver­i­fied of­fi­cial Face­book page.

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