Was it a case of misunderstanding between Anil Radhakrishnan Menon and Bineesh Bastin?
Anil Radhakrishnan Menon's social media page has been flooded with comments that qualify him as a casteist and elitist, shortly after a video of the actor. Bineesh Bastin Accusing the filmmaker and the management of the Government School of Medicine, Palakkad, of the same, surfaced.
The video showed Bineesh walking towards the stage, after authorities tried to stop him and interrupted Anil's speech. Then, the actor sat on the stage floor and asked for 30 seconds to speak. “Today is the day they insulted me the most. The president of the university said that Anil Ettan would not share the stage with me because I am someone who has asked for opportunities in his films, Bineesh said, before explaining that he is a manual worker and has not won any National Prize. Many came in support of the actor after the emotional speech began to appear online and called Anil for his alleged elitist behavior.
Anil, however, says he never refused to share the stage with Bineesh. When explaining his version of the story, the filmmaker tells us that the university approached him one day before the event, while heading to Ottapalam from Tamil Nadu.
Initially I was reluctant to accept because I was busy with the script of my next movie and I generally don't feel comfortable attending such functions. But they said they couldn't find anyone else. I made it clear if they could do it, then I would retire because I don't take money to attend functions and if someone else gets a monetary benefit, I don't want to get in the way, says Anil. “Then they called me later and told me that Bineesh would come too. For the reasons I had mentioned before, I told them to then let Bineesh be the main guest. Later, they called me back and told me there was some confusion and that the Bineesh event was canceled. Where is casteism or elitism in this? The irony is that I have even written a role for him in my next movie.
The filmmaker says that he was the one who asked the students to applaud when Bineesh took the stage and also asked him to take a seat. Bineesh, however, did not hear any of this and proceeded to say his piece.
Speaking to the media in Kochi on Friday, Bineesh says he drove from Idukki to attend the event, despite being informed of the show the day before. “Once I arrived in Palakkad, I checked into a hotel to refresh myself. Then a group of students including the Student Union The president came and told me that Anil said he was not interested in sharing a stage with me because he had asked for opportunities and that he belonged to the lowest strata of society. Anil had said he shouldn't be near the stage, they told me. That hurt me a lot. I have attended functions in more than 200 universities and I have never felt so insulted, he says.
The actor, who had played a role in Vijay Theri He said he initially agreed with the students' request to arrive after the Anil program, but then changed his mind. “I thought to myself why I should be late. I was invited to this function. The students did not even inform me of the location of the university, but I discovered it and fortunately I got there just when Anil Señor's speech was underway.
He says that even the director had tried to prevent him from going on stage. But what made me happy was that the students who had more education than me, stood up and applauded from the moment they saw me until I left the stage, says the actor.
Meanwhile, the director of the university, Dr. TB Culas, opined that the incident was the result of poor management by the students, and that Anil was the only official guest who was informed to the authorities. The students played a double game, he says.
“The students invited both of them but then the situation got out of hand. They also didn’t keep any of the faculty in the loop. There was no casteism or elitism involved, as far as I know, from the side of the director. There could have been an ego problem between them but again, I do not know about that.”
The principal says that the students had invited Bineesh and then called him to cancel the event. However, he did not agree. Then, they decided to schedule their event of University Day celebrations at 8 pm and the launch event of Anil magazine at 6.30 pm, hoping that the two do not know each other. But the event of the latter did not begin on time. Upon arriving at the university, Bineesh created a scene. He played his cards well and got the mileage he wanted, ”says Dr. Culas.
While we couldn't get in touch with the president of the university union K Vyshnav, he told another media outlet that Anil said he was uncomfortable sharing the stage and that Bineesh was someone who used to ask for opportunities to act in his film. However, we don't feel it was because of the caste. If that were the case, we would not have invited him, said Vyshnav.
By the way, another video that was filmed by Sarath Krishnan, who became popular for traveling with his mother, also appeared online that made Bineesh eloquent about Anil's attitude toward promising actors. The video that was filmed during the celebration of the success of Porinju Mariyam Jose made Bineesh say: “He is one of my favorite directors. I had worked with many filmmakers on projects that had big stars and generally ignore me. But I've only played a small role in the movie of (Anil) sir and he talks to me wherever he sees me. Even if there is Mammukka or Lalettan, he speaks to me the same way he speaks to them. He is someone who understands people.
Meanwhile, the directors' union of FEFKA has sent a show cause notice to the filmmaker to explain what happened. His secretary general B Unnikrishnan says: We have sought Anil's explanation. If necessary, we will also discuss it with Bineesh and then take appropriate measures. ”