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Kamal Haasan Criticises Mahabharata For Gambling With Draupadi; Pro-Hindu Group Files PIL

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The Hindu Munani Katchi, a right-winged Hindutva group, has reportedly filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) at the Tirunalveli district court against actor and filmmaker Kamal Haasan for making derogatory remarks about the Hindu epic Mahabharata.

In a recent televised interview, the actor had said that Indians give a lot of respect to a book [the Mahabharata] which shows men gambling using a woman (Draupadi) as collateral.  “In Mahabharata, Panchali was used a pawn while the men gambled. She was used as a collateral. And India is a country that respects and honours a book that revolves around men using a woman to gamble away as if she were a mere object,” he said. 

The TV interview was aired on 12 March, and the complaint was filed by Adhinatha Sundaram of the HMK on 15 March.

Speaking to the Hindustan Times, HMK’s president Sampath Kumar said, “Kamal Haasan has been repeatedly taking an anti-Hindu stand and it has increased during the recent times. He has needlessly criticised Mahabharat, which is a revered epic of the Hindus along with Ramayana. Can he dare to talk in an insulting manner about Islam or Christianity and Bible and Quran? There will be a massive campaign against Kamal Haasan if he does not apologize and withdraw his comments. Actually he has been a serial offender and we demand action be taken against him.”

HMK’s president went on to add that the actor, a brahmin by birth, is completely anti-Brahmin and someone who had “capitulated before the Muslim organisations” during Vishwaroopam‘s release. 

Further, offended by the actor’s comments, the group’s Erode members recently attempted to burn an effigy of him. While they were stopped in time by the local police, the incident caused a minor public disturbance . Three members of the Erode branch of the Hindu Makkal Katchi were subsequently arrested. 

Kamal Haasan was also vocal during the Jallikattu debate in January, organising a press conference and expressing his thoughts over the violence that escalated on 23 January. He also criticised the political scenario in Tamil Nadu when the issue of the rightful Chief Minister arose. 

Haasan, who recently lost his older brother Chandrahasan in London, has thus far not commented on the PIL filed against him. 

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