• What Irked the Anger of Mammootty Fans Over Parvathy?

    "Followers of actor Mammootty have been busy pouring violent comments against actress, for pointing out the misogynistic trends in Malayalam mainstream movies"

    Shilpa Shaji

    December 28, 2017

    Image by Nitesh Kumar


    For the past week, followers of Malayalam actor Mammootty have been busy pouring lewd and violent comments against the award-winning artist Parvathy TK, who pointed out the misogynistic trends in Malayalam mainstream movies.

    While talking in open forum at the recently concluded International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK), Parvathy expressed her disappointment over derogatory dialogues towards a woman performed by a leading actor in the movie Kasaba.

    Though the actor, who had bagged the best female actor award in the recently concluded IFFK, placed her comments with all due respect to the film fraternity, the fans were not tolerant enough to accept the criticism that used the film Kasaba as an example.

    During the talk in the IFFK open forum, Parvathy said: "Kasaba was a movie which I unfortunately watched… I was definitely disappointed to watch an actor par excellence, who happened to say certain dialogues which were not only derogatory but also most saddening to a woman in a scene". As the discussion progressed, Parvathy also added: "I don't think one can limit the statements to Kasaba”.

    Days after her comments, veteran superstar Mammootty’s fans violently trolled her with derogatory and misogynistic comments on various online platforms. She even got even rape threats and acid attack threats along with others. Focusing on character assassination, the social media warriors of Mammootty fan clubs even called her a “cheap feminist”.

    While talking about the entire row, Beena Paul, a member of Women in Cinema Collective (WCC), said to Newsclick: “Parvathy has pointed out the misogyny in films in a wider context without mentioning the names of any actors. But Mammootty fans have taken up and interpreted the comments as if it was against the actor”. 

    The cyber bullies resorted to malicious attacks on other members of WCC as well, including Rima Kallingal, one of the leading figure in the Malayalam film industry, and Geethu Mohandas, a critically acclaimed director and actor who supported the arguments of Parvathy.

    The current series of attacks is not an isolated incident. "From the moment when we voiced against the misogynistic trends in the industry, since then WCC has been facing such kinds of attacks”, said Beena on the attacks against WCC, the organization for the working women professionals in the Malayalam film industry.

    “Some people have a misconception that WCC is an organization which mutinies against the film industry. But WCC is working for a better environment in the industry”, added Beena Paul extending all the support to Parvathy.

    Following the row, Parvathy lodged a complaint to DGP Loknath Behera. Along with the complaint, she furnished details about the people who posted defamatory comments.  So far one person has been arrested because of this particular complaint.

    Meanwhile, persons from various quarters including state Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac have extended their support to Parvathy.

    Condemning the online attacks, Thomas Isaac took to Facebook and praised Parvathy for making Kerala proud by winning the best actress award at IFFK.

    “She is currently facing a fierce cyber-attack. The abuse is in the name of some anti-women content in a movie. Such violent traits against women are highly deplorable,” he said.

    He also added, “It is now clear that the decision of women in the film industry to create a platform for upholding their rights has not gone down well with many in the state”.

    Taking a note on attacks against women on cyberspace, the minister added that this is not an isolated incident and it has become common to attack women on cyber platforms for voicing their opinion.


    First published in Newsclick.

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