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Anti-Caste Filmmaker Pa Ranjith Gets Slapped With Charges Of Inciting Caste Enmity

The filmmaker had reportedly criticised the Hindu emperor from the Chola dynasty, Raja Raja I.

Filmmaker Pa Ranjith, who is famous for making films like Kaala and Kabali, and who has been a highly vocal opponent of the caste system and caste-based discrimination and violence, was slapped with charges of promoting enmity between groups and for allegedly inciting caste enmity.

Based on a complaint by the Hindu Makkal Katchi, a right-wing Hindu nationalist party, Pa Ranjith was booked over his remark that the rule of Chola emperor Raja Raja I represented a dark period in history. As per reports, during a public meeting organised by the Blue Panthers Party in Tiruppanandal near Kumbakonam on June 5, Pa Ranjith allegedly made the offending remarks.

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He allegedly said, “During his reign, land was taken away from Dalits by intrigue.” Ranjith also reportedly said that the large-scale oppression of Dalits had started during the period and that the Devadasi system — the practice of dedicating girls and women to temples — was prevalent during his reign. Further, he also said that there was a race currently going on among castes in Tamil Nadu to claim the legacy of Cholan.

Acting on a complaint from former Thanjavur district secretary of the Hindu Makkal Katchi, Ka Bala, who said that the filmmaker’s speech was aimed at “creating divisions among castes and against the sovereignty of the country”, the Thirupanandal police registered a case against him and booked him under sections 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot) and 153 (A) (1) (a) (promoting enmity between different groups) of IPC.

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