Baahubali 2: Sathyaraj apologises, says he takes more pride in being a Tamilian than actor. Watch video

Baahubali 2's 'Kattappa' Sathyaraj has apologised to Kannadigas and requested them to support Baahubali 2's release. Will this end the protest against SS Rajamouli film in Karnataka?

By: Express Web Desk | Bengaluru | Updated: April 21, 2017 5:02 pm
Baahubali 2, karnataka, sathyaraj, baahubali 2 karnataka, sathyaraj baahubali 2 karnataka, baahubali sathyaraj stills Baahubali 2: Sathyaraj issues an apology for his remarks after Kannada groups threatened to stop the release of the SS Rajamouli film in the state.

In order to put an end to the raging controversy that was threatening the release of director SS Rajamouli’s Baahubali: The Conclusion in Karnataka, senior actor Sathyaraj on Friday issued a statement apologising for his remarks that he made when the tension between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka over the Cauvery water row was at its peak. “About nine years ago, Tamilians in Karnataka were attacked during a Cauvery row. There were protests against the screening of Tamil films. The actors of Tamil film fraternity held a protest meet to condemn the attacks against Tamil films in Karnataka. Most of them, including me, spoke out of passion that day. In retaliation, my effigies were burnt in Karnataka,” Sathyaraj said in a statement.

Sathyaraj says sorry for his remarks

Apologising for his comments, Baahubali 2’s Kattappa said, “I understand that my remarks have caused personal pain to people of Karnataka. I am not against Kannadigas or Karnataka. The biggest example for this is that for the last 30 years my assistant has been Shekar who is a Kannadiga.” While noting that about 30 films of his were released in Karnataka in the last nine years without any problem, he added, “I was also offered a few Kannada movies. However, due to the time constraint, I could not take up on the offers… The feelings of people of Karnataka were hurt after they saw a video of my speech on YouTube from the past. I wholeheartedly apologise for certain words I used in my speech nine years ago,” he said.

SS Rajamouli requests groups not to ban Baahubali 2

He also requested Tamilians and his well-wishers not to be upset with him. “I’m a small part of the biggest film called Baahubali. I don’t want the work of thousands of people to suffer due to the consequences of my actions. I also have the additional responsibility of protecting the interest of exhibitors and distributors of Karnataka, who have bought the theatrical right of Baahubali 2. So I hope you understand my decision,” he explained.

Read: Kannada groups threaten to stall Baahubali 2 release over actor Sathyaraj’s remarks on Cauvery issue

But, he also noted that he will continue to fight for the rights of Tamil people, including Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka or Cauvery and farmers’ rights. “So if the producers and directors think that they might face problems because of my actions, I request them not to approach a small actor like me for their films in the future and suffer losses,” he said, “I say it because I take more pride in being a Tamilian than an actor.”

“I lovingly ask Kannadigas to accept my heartfelt apology and support the release of Baahubali 2,” he said. He also thanked Rajamouli, producers and cast and crew of the film for their support in the issue.

Sathyaraj’s statement comes a day after the controversy intensified in Karnataka with pro-Kannada groups, mainly led by activist Vatal Nagaraj, refusing to relent on their demand. The agitating groups continued to threaten to stall the release of the film by calling for a state-wide bandh on April 28, the day Baahubali 2 will hit the screens worldwide. The protesters had also given an eight-day deadline for Sathyaraj to tender an apology, despite repeated attempts from the filmmakers to distance themselves from Sathyaraj’s controversial statements.

“Sathyaraj is neither the director nor the producer of this film. He is one of the many supporting actors in the film. If you stop this film, he is not going to face any loss. We think it is not right to punish so many people for one person’s comments and turn the anger on an individual towards Baahubali 2,” Rajamouli said in a video statement on Thursday. He also added that they have explained the situation to the actor and there is nothing more they can do.

Karnataka is an important market for the filmmakers from the business standpoint. It is the only state where Telugu, Tamil and Hindi versions of the film will be released. According to reports, Baahubali 1 earned a record share of Rs 35 crore for distributors in Karnataka alone. However, with Sathyaraj’s apology, Baahubali 2 should not face any problem in its release across the state.

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  1. Anand Ch
    Apr 22, 2017 at 6:42 am
    Why can't he be plain and straight forward? Just one line apology would have been sufficient to keep things cool. Why impose unclear prose on m es ?
    1. N
      Neti Naut
      Apr 22, 2017 at 5:25 am
      For leverage, Karnataka should not release Bahubali 2
      1. B
        Apr 22, 2017 at 4:27 am
        If some fellow talks nonsense how is that people react .?It tells that remore and more Initydians donot judge in a broad manner but carry over with local unity
        1. T
          Apr 22, 2017 at 12:21 am
          No intelligent/sensible Kannadiga or Tamil will give a about what a certain actor said 9 years ago or now, why a certain movie plays or does not play in the local theater. There are more important things in life for them and for their own community, if they care about their community. Whoever this Vattal N is, he seems like another s bag.
          1. P
            Apr 21, 2017 at 11:58 pm
            Indian express u guys better get a good translator.. I saw his speech.. he didn't apologise he just says he " feels bad " if his comments had hurt's not the same thing.. don't put wrong headlines if u can't understand the language
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