The Tamil Nadu Teachers’ Association has demanded a ban on Jyotika-starrer Raatchasi, saying that the film portrays government school teachers in negative light, and discourages parents from enrolling their children to government schools in the state.
PK Elamaran, the head of the association’s Chennai wing, and other office bearers – A Arjunan, T Ramajayam, S Gokulkrishnan, C Sreedhar, K Ramesh and B Jagan met the Chennai City Commissioner today to demand a stay order on the film and the removal of controversial scenes and dialogues.
The letter said that the film was offensive and a false portrayal of government school teachers, blaming them for the poor quality of education. “In the name of refurbishing education, the film slings mud at government school teachers. There are scenes showing teachers neglecting students, showing them as casteist, and solely blaming them for the poor state of education in the country itself. If false messages like these are spread, how will parents enroll their children to our schools?”
The letter asked the commissioner of police for action against the film’s director Sy Gowthamraj and dialogue writer Bharathi Thambi. It said, “The movie insults and degrades teachers, shows schools as filthy, and its teachers as negligent who come and go at their will and are involved in other activities. In doing this the film shows itself as progressive only to gain publicity and profit. The writers of the film are not aware that it is teachers who demand the improvement of education. There are 56,000 government schools and its students come from poor families. Yet they score 490/500 in their board exams because of their teachers.”
The letter said that both Jyotika in Raatchasi and actor Samuthirakani in Saatai were positive portrayals, but these films blamed teachers for the state of government schools and this was condemnable. The association also asked why films don’t speak about unauthorised schools and privatisation of education instead.
Raatchasi released on July 5 and is running successfully in theatres currently. The producers Dream Warrior Pictures recently also announced 50 percent offer on film tickets for all school students across Tamil Nadu.
The film stars Jyotika as a newly appointed principal of a government school, who is determined to improve the school’s standards. Poornima Bhagyaraj, Sathyan, Hareesh Peradi and Kavitha Bharathi played important roles. Sean Roldan was the composer and cinematography was by Gokul Benoy and editing by Philomin Raj.