No truth in Pulipaarvai being screened to Rajapakse

Pravin Gandhi, the director of Pulipaarvai, a Tamil film on the 12-year-old son of LTTE leader Prabhakaran who was found shot dead after being captured by Lankan troops, has strongly dismissed reports that suggested that his film was privately screened to Sri Lankan President Rajapakse to seek his approval.

“There is absolutely no truth to such rumours. How is it even possible? I’m an Indian who has made a film for Indians. Why must I make a movie and then show it to the Sri Lankan President?,” he asks when pointed out that there have been reports online that make such a claim.

“The motive of this film is to promote peace. We want peace and a solution to the problems of Tamils in Lanka. I’m of the opinion that God, through nature, has given everything for all humans. It is only when some try to usurp the share of others using their show of strength does the need to resist arise, and that is what happened in Lanka. The Tamils there cannot be denied their rightful place and I have showed this clearly in my film.”

Concerns have also been raised on the manner in which Balachandran has been showcased in the film. One report claimed that Balachandran had been portrayed as a child militant, a move that could supplement Sri Lanka’s efforts to brandish the LTTE as an outfit that used child militants in its ranks. Refuting this allegation, Pravin says, “Nowhere in the film have I shown Balachandran as a militant. Right at the start of the film, I’ve said that there was no place for anyone aged below 18 in the LTTE. When that is the case, how can I have shown Balachandran as a child militant?”

But what about some of the movie stills in which the character is shown holding a rifle and dressed in the organization’s fatigues? “All those are scenes from a song which is played at the end of the film. The song is played after the boy’s death. These stills are parts of montages.”

He continues, “I believe had he been alive, Balachandran would have gone on to rise to great he montages suggest only this. If Prabhakaran were alive and had asked for a movie to be made on his son, I doubt if that other movie could have made him prouder than mine.”

Finally, commenting on the concerns expressed by Tamil enthusiasts, he says, “I completely understand these concerns emerge from the fear of whether I have showcased Balachandran in the right light. People have jumped to the conclusion that just because the censor board has passed my film with a U/A certificate, it will be pro-Lankan. Let me assure you, their fear will turn into respect for me once they watch my film.”


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