The wink is back – a throwback to the 60s and 70s – immortalised by Priya Varrier in the song Manikya Mala-raya Poovi. But more than the wink and the eyebrow dance, the lyrics of the song are creating ripples online, because they have supposedly hurt Muslim sentiments.
A complaint has been filed in Hyderabad and the police have registered a case against Omar Lulu, director of “Oru Adhaar Love,” and some others. The complainant has no problem with the actors. Rather, the objection is to the reference to Prophet Muhammad and his wife ‘Khadeeja Beevi’ in the backdrop of a mushrooming young-age romance in a school corridor.
Incidentally, Manikya Mala-raya Poovi from Oru Adaar Love is the recreation of a famous ‘mappila paattu’ (a Muslim folk song) that was composed by Thalassery K Refeeque and has lyrics from PMA Jabbar. Interestingly, the complainant did not even understand the lyrics. He took offence only after looking up the lyrics of Manikya Malaraya Poovi on the internet and got hold of a translation on Google. This is when it struck him that “it hurts the sentiments of the Muslim community”.
Omar Lulu, the director of Oru Adaar Love, stands by the song and has said that no matter what, it will remain in the film. He maintained that it is a love song which does not hurt any sentiments and will not be removed from the film despite any kind of pressure, media reports said.
He also claimed Muslims in a part of Kerala had been singing the song for over four decades. “The song written by Jabbar is sung during marriages and every celebration in Malabar region of North Kerala. Malabar Muslims have been singing this song since 1978. If it was not objectionable then, how has it become objectionable now?” Lulu asked.
The song has gone viral, with close to 15 million views on YouTube in just four days. It is all over Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. As part of their investigation, the Hyderabad police will seek the opinion of some Islamic clerics after getting a translation of the song. “If the song has really hurt the sentiments then definitely action will be initiated against those involved,” the ACP said. The film is slated to be released later this year.