Mersal’s much talked about GST dialogues to be removed after strong political pressure in Tamil Nadu
Vijay’s Mersal is the latest talk of the town after the movie’s humongous opening worldwide. The movie has already shattered several box office records and is on course to become one of the highest grossers in Tamil cinema. In the meanwhile, the BJP leaders in Tamil Nadu had come out strongly against the makers for allegedly criticising their schemes like GST, demonetisation and digital India.
Mersal, scripted jointly by Atlee, KV Vijayendra Prasad and Ramana Girivasan, has an usual revenge story but comes with a very relevant social message about the importance of a proper health sector. The protagonist in the film fights for free medical facilities to all, regardless of their financial background.
In a particular scene in the film, the character played by Vijay compares the standards of health sector in India and Singapore. He says that despite charging only 7% GST, people there get free medical treatment. But in India where people are charged 28% GST, we don’t get any free treatment. There is another scene where Vadivelu mocks the digital India scheme and how people had to stand in long queues before the ATMs during the demonetisation period.
Tamil Nadu BJP leader Tamilisai Soundarajan and RSS / Youth wing leader SG Suryah had demanded that the scenes related to GST and Digital India in Mersal must be removed. After strong political pressure from all corners including central minister Pon Radhakrishnan, the makers of Mersal have finally agreed to remove these scenes.
It is a very undemocratic practice by the political parties to force themselves into one’s artistic liberty. In Mersal’s case, these above mentioned scenes earned loud applause from the audience. It is highly unfortunate that political groups are forcing the makers to remove scenes that are critical of their schemes, which is a clear sign of intolerance.