Malayalam actors Rima Kallingal, Remya Nambeesan and Geethu Mohandas among others have quit the AMMA (Association of Malayalam Movie Artistes) following actor Dileep’s inclusion back into the film body. The Kammara Sambhavam actor is the eighth accused in a case of kidnapping and sexual assault of a popular Malayalam actress. He was recently welcomed back into AMMA, a day after superstar Mohanlal was appointed as its new president.
Rima Kallingal, Remya Nambeesan, Geethu Mohandas and the victim of the sexual assault are the actors who have resigned in protest. However, WCC members Parvathy, Manju Warrier and Padmapriya have refrained from quitting AMMA.
Rima Kallingal, Remya Nambeesan and Geethu Mohandas hit out at AMMA
“It is meaningless to continue in this organisation,” wrote the victim in a statement after announcing her decision to resign from AMMA.
In a statement, Remya Nambeesan said by deciding to take Dileep back into the association, AMMA has clearly declared on whose side it is.
“I was shocked to learn from the media the move to take up the issue which was not even in the general body agenda and then follow it up with a decision to reinstate the actor. The body clearly did not think of its member who was victim of the attack when the decision was being made,” she said.
Nambisan said a few actors were also quitting AMMA in solidarity with the victim and hoped this move will prompt the body to correct its decision.
Geetu Mohandas said she should have resigned much earlier.
“As a member of the panel, I had realised much earlier that to question the association from within would always be difficult. This association needs members who will fall in line and not question decisions of the leadership,” the actor said, while saying she will fight this irresponsibile stance of AMMA from outside now.
Reema Kallingal said she did not believe this was an issue limited to a person or an association. The actor hoped that the coming generation will have the option to work with dignity and without compromises.
Founding member of Women in Cinema Collective (WCC) Rima Kallingal had earlier lashed out against the AMMA for its decision. According to media reports, Rima has said that a logical discussion with AMMA won’t be of use.
Responding to a question as to why the WCC did not oppose the return of Dileep in AMMA, she said, “Everybody is asking why we did not ask these questions (the WCC had raised concerns in its Facebook page) at the AMMA meet. There are two reasons. One, it’s going to be one year after the Malayalam actor assault case during which we have been initiating discussions on the issue with AMMA in many ways. We all saw how AMMA, during a show (AMMA Mazhavillu), which was organised collectively by everyone, reacted to our questions on a public platform.”
A skit was performed at the AMMA Mazhavillu show by six women artistes which took potshots at the WCC. The event had several big names in attendance including the new president of AMMA, Mohanlal.