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Pa Ranjith steps up to support Chinmayi Sripaada as producer K Rajan threatens her

In a new video that has come to light, Ranjith condemned the producer's speech against the accuser of lyricist Vairamuthu, adding that the industry needs to 'accept' its guilt in the sexual abuse of women.

Our Correspondent

Even as the #MeToo movement in Indian cinema seems to be slowly fading into the background, there are a few filmmakers who have stepped up in support of the women who have spoken up.

Singer Chinmayi Sripaada has been fighting an uphill battle since making her accusation against lyricist Vairamuthu. Despite the abuse coming her way from producer K Rajan, the singer has found support from filmmaker Pa Ranjith.

During an audio launch, Rajan levelled threats against Chinmayi for making accusations against the veteran lyricist. Calling the accusations 'cheap publicity', the producer added, "I have some people with me who can destroy you."

In a recently emerged video, Ranjith took to the stage at the same event and condemned Rajan's statement.

Ranjith, who directed the Rajinikanth-starrers Kabali (2016) and Kaala (2017) and produced Pariyerum Perumal (2018), said it is time the film industry accepts the reality of sexual abuse.

"Cinema is an industry that has [perpetrated] sexual abuse on women for years," the filmmaker said. "We cannot deny this, and it is time we accept it. When women complain, we should not take it as an accusation. We need to go beyond the accusation and investigate the complaint and its details. A woman cannot be made a victim or an offender on the basis of a complaint. I condemn this [statement]."

Chinmayi has been quite vocal about the opposition she has had to face since making her allegations against Vairamuthu. The singer also accused actor Radha Ravi of banning her from the dubbing artistes' union. Radha Ravi, more recently, was criticized for his slur against actress Nayanthara on stage.

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Sexual harassment