Kerala police and the government have done well so far to arrest high-profile actor Dileep in the case of abduction and rape of a noted actress.
The people of Kerala woke up to the shocking tale of the abduction and sexual assault in February last. Four months after the sordid tale unspooled, actor Dileep has been arrested for the conspiracy leading to the incident. Revelations made by the first accused, Pulsar Suni, who executed the actor’s ‘orders’, proved crucial in catching up with the hero-turned-villain.
In the process, the Left Democratic Front Government and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan have redeemed themselves. The Chief Minister had said earlier that there was no conspiracy behind the abduction and rape and that it was the handiwork of the first accused, Pulsar Suni.
The climax, which came after months of suspense and twists in the tale, will go a long way to restore the faith of people in the delivery of natural justice. A few judgments in some recent cases had created doubts in the minds of the people about the efficacy of the system. The unraveling of the case also provides an ideal opportunity to cleanse the Malayalam film industry, which is in the vicious grip of a powerful mafia. The nexus between film personalities and the dreaded underworld, which has all along been suspected, has now been exposed. This is the time to initiate quick course correction.
The Association of Malayalam ‘Male’ Actors (AMMA), which shocked the people by equating the rape survivor with the actor under a cloud of suspicion, has expelled Dileep from its ranks. But it was a crying shame that AMMA failed to even pass a resolution expressing solidarity to and support for the actress in distress. All the waters in the Arabian Sea will not wash the stain on its hands.
That women in the film industry are shedding their fear and asserting their right to equal opportunities, wages and proper working conditions is clear from the formation of a Women’s Collective in Cinema (WCC). In fact, the organisation has already moved the national as well as the state Women’s Commission for action against the actors who made derogatory and insulting comments against their distraught colleague.
Both the police and the media also deserve kudos for the manner in which they discharged their duties. The much-maligned police have at last added a fine feather to their cap by nabbing a super star culprit. Likewise, the media also can give a pat on its back for a job done well under pressure. But for the media’s doggedness and tenacity, the case would have been cast into the dustbin of obscurity. No wonder, the huge crowds which gathered in front of Aluva Police Club where the arrested actor was brought, shouted slogans in praise of the police and the media.
It must also be said that Kerala has blazed a new trail by netting a big fish from the film industry. It is an example other States and film industries like Bollywood and Kollywood will do well to emulate.