Agencies, Chennai In a major setback for actor-director Kamal Hassan again, a Division Bench of the Madras High Court today extended the ban on his controversial film ‘Viswaroopam’, by staying the single Judge order last night granting clearance for its screening.
When the appeal preferred by the Tamil Nadu government challenging Justice K Venkataraman’s order lifting the ban and allowing the screening of the film, the First Bench had granted an interim stay and adjourned the case to February 6. The Bench, comprising acting Chief Justice Elipi Dharmarao and Justice Aruna Jagadeesan, accepted the State Government’s plea that release of the film would lead to law and order problems and stayed the single judge order issued late last night. The Bench also directed the state government to file a report detailing the reasons for imposing the ban by February 4 and said the final arguments in the case would commence from February 6. This meant that the release of the film would be further delayed, causing a setback for the actor.
The Single Judge had late last night lifted the ban on ‘Viswaroopam’ which was banned from screening in theatres following protests from some Muslim outifts alleging that the film portrayed them in poor light. The Single Judge had passed the orders on a petition filed by Rajkamal Films International, the production house of the actor, challenging the two-week ban imposed by the Tamil Nadu Government on January 23, two days before its scheduled release on January 25.
Theatres screening Kamal film attacked
Agencies, Chennai: Several theatres in the city and in some parts of Tamil Nadu which were screening the controversial film ‘Viswaroopam’, produced by Kamal Hassan, came under attack by miscreants, causing panic among the people. While petrol bombs were hurled at a theatre in the sensitive Ramanathapuram district, which was planning to screen the film in the wake of the Madras High Court lifting the two-week ban, in Chennai City at least four theatres were attacked with stones by miscreants.
The petrol bombs were hurled by a gang that came in a van and fled the scene. Though police protection was given, the gang hurled it from outside and sped past in the same car, leading to tension in the area. Four theatres in the city were attacked by some miscreants damaging the window panes.
They also burnt tyres in front of a theatre, while the banner of the film was torn and later burnt by miscreants at a cinema hall in the arterial Anna Salai to condemn the screening of the film. While the ban on the film was lifted in neighbouring Union Territory of Puducherry and in the Karaikal region, Kamal fans hit the streets in the textile town of Coimbatore and in the southern Cumbum in Theni district demanding that the film be screened in the wake of the High Court lifting the ban, reports received here said.