The Vairamuthu ONV Award controversy has sparked outrage and has become a concern for many after actor Parvathy condemned the ONV Literary Award jury’s decision of honouring the rape accused Tamil lyricist Vairamuthu.
After the Uyare actor took to Twitter and Instagram to express her views on the alleged unfair jury decision, Director Anjali Menon, Filmmaker Geetu Mohandas, Actor Rima Kallingal and singer Chinmayee Sripraada called out on the same, claiming that the honour of the ONV award has been disrupted by presenting it to an “accused of sexual crimes”.
Vairamuthu ONV Award Controversy- What Is He Accused Of?
Vairamuthu faced multiple allegations of sexually harassing women. Allegedly, 17 women were sexually harassed by the 67-year-old lyricist.
Parvathy wrote in the caption of her Instagram post, “17 women have come out with their stories. We don’t know how many more have been wronged. There seems to be enough whataboutery to continue wronging those who are wronged. Only to uphold the reputation of those in power.”
Condemning the jury’s decision of May 26, members of the Women in Cinema Collective took to their social media accounts, expressing disagreement over the ONV Academy’s judgement.
ONV Sir's name resounds with deep sensitivity, dignity and respect for any Malayalee. Therefore very disturbed to know that ONV Academy has chosen an alleged perpetrator (called out by 17 women) for the #ONVAward. Are these the values they celebrate? https://t.co/Y87dOIcGfj
— Anjali Menon (@AnjaliMenonFilm) May 27, 2021
Mr. Vairamuthu gets the fifth ONV literary award instituted by the ONV Cultural Academy.
Late Mr ONV Kurup would be proud.
— Chinmayi Sripaada (@Chinmayi) May 26, 2021
Back in 2018, Vairamuthu was accused of sexual harassment during the #MeToo movement. Sripada and Bhuvana Seshan were among the women who accused him back then. Journalist Sandhya Menon also tweeted allegations, messaged to her by a woman, against Vairamuthu. Hayma Malini came forward with the claim that one of the presenters of a TV channel, where she worked was harassed by Vairamuthu.
Vairamuthu denied all allegations and claimed them to be “filled with ulterior motives”. He also said that he is ready to face any legal action and asked to let the court decide.
Adoor Gopalakrishnan told the Cue website that the award will not be recalled and that the award is not an award given after examining a person’s character but is given for ‘excellence in writing’.
“In that case, a special award should be given for character. Vairamuthu was considered by the jury for his excellent writing. I do not know if the jury knows he is a person facing such charges. My personal opinion is that awards should not be decided on the basis of character. As chairman of the Cultural Society, I do not interfere in the decisions of the jury,” Gopalakrishnan said.