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Karthi's escape from a Pak prison in Kaatru Veliyidai is based on a real incident

The story was reportedly based on the escape of Flight lieutenant Dilip Parulkar from a Pakistani Prisoner of War camp. 

Manigandan KR

Director Mani Ratnam's Kaatru Veliyidai, which hit screens last Friday, has been receiving mixed reviews. While one set of audiences seem extremely happy with the movie, there is another set of relatively displeased audiences. However, the authenticity and commitment of Mani Ratnam's effort to the film cannot be denied. 

While the work of music director A R Rahman and cinematographer Ravi Varman in the film have come in for unanimous praise from all quarters, critics have picked apart some scenes in the film as unrealistic. Several reviewers, to substantiate their point, had drawn attention to the manner in which Karthi's character, along with two other prisoners of war, escapes from a Pakistani prison. It was marked out as a weak link in the plot of the film

However, director Mani Ratnam's team believes that the whole sequence is as authentic as it can be. Sources close to the unit of the film say that the entire sequence is actually based on a true incident. The team confirmed that the sequence is based on Flight Lieutenant Dilip Parulkar's escape from a Pakistani prison.

"Parulkar's plane was shot down over Pakistan on December 10, 1971. However, he quickly turned that catastrophe into the greatest adventure of his life. On August 13,  1972, Parulkar, along with Malvinder Singh Grewal and Harish Sinhji, escaped from a POW camp in Rawalpindi. Four Miles To Freedom is their story,"said a source from the director's unit.

"Four miles to freedom' is actually a book written by Ms Faith Johnston. The book tells their real story. Kaatru Veliyidai borrows incidents from this book. Most of what Karthi and his friends do to escape are based on real incidents," sources from director Mani Ratnam's team claimed. They added, "This should put an end to the doubts of people who question the authenticity of this sequence."

Despite the criticism, the film seems to have managed a decent weekend at the box office. It is also reported to have earned Karthi his best ever opening weekend at the box office. It looks like Mani Ratnam's effort and authenticity is making a mark on the audience.