CHENNAI: References to the controversial GST and healthcare scene in the just-released Tamil film “Mersal” starring popular Tamil superstar Vijay has spread like wildfire on the internet. “Mersal” opened to fabulous response from fans across the state.
In the scene, the character popular actor Vijay plays in the film can be seen questioning why medicines have a Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 12% while alcohol, which kills many, doesn’t.
The actor in the scene also makes an obvious reference to the Gorakhpur tragedy in which several children died a painful death due to due to oxygen shortage as firm withdrew supply owing to non-payment.
Later, Vijay’s character goes on to list similar incidents – wherein four people undergoing dialysis passed away due to power failure in the hospital during dialysis in Pondicherry and a newborn was nibbled by rats and died due to rodent bites.
Scene that North Korean President Kim Jong-Un wants to delete from the Movie "Mersal". (2017) pic.twitter.com/suBoE1s0ea
— History of India (@RealHistoryPic) October 21, 2017
The action drama Mersal released in 2500 screens and had recorded and earning of over Rs 43.3 crore on its opening day.
The movie has released, and the makers faced stringent opposition from the Tamil Nadu unit of BJP, which demanded removal of specific dialogues.
Kamal Haasan has also defened the film.
Mersal was certified. Dont re-censor it . Counter criticism with logical response. Dont silence critics. India will shine when it speaks.
— Kamal Haasan (@ikamalhaasan) October 20, 2017
The CPI (M) and superstar Rajinikanth starrer “Kabali” director Pa. Ranjith came to the defence of the “Mersal” crew, questioning BJP’s logic of demanding the cuts.
Ranjith said there was no need for removing the scenes on GST as demanded by the BJP.
“There is no need. People’s opinion on the issue seem to have been reflected in the film as the scene is receiving grand applause from the audience in theatres,” he claimed.
The Producers Guild of India has lauded the censor board for allowing the makers of Tamil movie “Mersal” — in news for comments critical of GST and Digital India — to express themselves with freedom.
The hashtag #MersalVsModi has become warcry on social media.