Actor Parvthay led the criticism against the jury chaired by renowned filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnan for not considering the allegations against Vairamuthu before selecting him for the award.
The ONV Cultural Academy is “re-examining” its decision to award songwriter Vairamuthu following a massive social media outrage. “As per the request of the award committee, the ONV Cultural Academy has decided to subject the ONV Literature award to reconsideration,” said the academy in a press release.
The academy came under fire by high-profile members of the Malayalam film industry for zeroing in on Vairamuthu as the recipient of the fifth ONV Kurup literary award. Vairamuthu has been accused of predatory behaviour by multiple women, during the height of the #MeToo movement in India a couple of years ago.
Actor Parvthay led the criticism against the jury chaired by renowned filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnan for not considering the allegations against Vairamuthu before selecting him for the award. The jury was accused of undermining the pain of those who have suffered from Vairamuthu’s alleged predatory behaviour.
“If you come at me with the art vs artist debate, let me tell you that for me the humanity of the person creating the art is the only thing I’d choose to look at. I can live without the “art” of those who hollow out lives with absolute impunity,” Parvathy had slammed the jury in a post on her Instagram page.
Filmmaker Anjali Menon also joined the protest. “ONV Sir’s name resounds with deep sensitivity, dignity and respect for any Malayalee. Therefore very disturbed to know that ONV Academy has chosen an alleged perpetrator (called out by 17 women) for the #ONVAward. Are these the values they celebrate?,” she wrote on her Twitter page.
Musician TM Krishna was among those who questioned the jury’s wisdom. “This is how our society validates and gives more strength to someone who has been called out by several women as a sexual predator. Utterly Shameful! (sic),” he tweeted.
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