Court stays national award for Malayalam film `Kesu`

Updated: Oct 19, 2010, 21:02 PM IST

Kochi: The Kerala High Court Tuesday stayed the 57th National Film Award for Malayalam children`s film "Kesu" that was directed by veteran director Sivan, father of film personalities like Santosh, Sangeeth and Sanjeev.

A bench of Justice Antony Dominic, through an interim order, stayed the national film award for "Kesu", but directed that all other awards can be given.

The stay was granted in connection with a petition filed by film maker Majid Gulistan whose children`s film "Chithrakuzhal" was rejected by the regional jury.

Speaking to IANS, N. Nandakumara Menon, counsel for Gulistan, said the court accepted the argument that "Kesu" was a remake of an earlier film "Pularvattom" which won the state award in 2001.

A film which is a remake of an earlier film should not be considered for the national award, Gulistan said.

Gulistan also pleaded that Sivan`s film should not get the national award because Sivan`s son Sanjeev was a member of the regional jury. He alleged his film was intentionally blocked by Sanjeev so that his father`s film could go to the national jury.

"Sivan`s film had got a subsidy from the Children`s Film Society and from the records it has come to light that Sanjeev was an associate director of "Kesu". The court was convinced that there was gross violation and hence the award has been stayed," said Menon.

"Kesu" landed in trouble when filmmaker and jury member Harikumar said that he was responsible for director Sivan`s film getting an award and alleged that it was a remake of his earlier work.

"Kesu" has been in the news since its release last year because Harikumar claimed it to be a remake of his 2001 film "Pularvattom".

Gulistan expressed happiness over the court`s interim order Tuesday and said "Kesu" had won this year`s state award also and when the media had pointed out the violation in giving the award to the film, it was ignored.

"But when I got a raw deal at the hands of the national awards jury also, I decided to go to court. Truth has triumphed," said Gulistan.

Reacting to this, Sivan told reporters over telephone from Mumbai that he was not aware of the development in court.

"I am in Mumbai and involved in a work. I have nothing to say on this," said Sivan.

IANS