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Vishwaroopam row comes to an end

Movie expected to be released soon

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Actor-cum-producer Kamal Haasan's new movie Viswaroopam is at last expected to hit the silverscreens in Tamil Nadu, after the actor and the protesting Muslim organisations concluded a discussion on releasing the movie after making a few changes in the movie.

After conducting discussion with the Muslim organisations and the home secretary with the Government of Tamil Nadu for hours today, Kamal Haasan today evening announced that the movie will be released after removing some scenes. He also thanked Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa for helping him to settle the issue.

According to sources, around seven scenes would be removed from the movie and some of the audios would be muted, as part of the agreement.

The petitions filed with the Madras High Court related to the movie would be withdrawn, he said. The date for of the movie would be announced soon.

The Muslim organisations said that they are withdrawing from protesting against the movie, since Haasan has agreed to remove the objectionable scenes.

It may be noted that the movie, which was expected to be relased in theatres in Tamil Nadu on January 25, was banned by the State government on January 23, after some Muslim organisations raised their protest against the movie alleging it has scenes which would hurt the sentiments of the community.

Kamal Haasan approached the Madras High Court against the ban, which was imposed through invoking section 144 in all the districts, and a single bench ordered against the government's decision, allowing the movie to be released in the State. However, on an appeal filed by the government a division bench of the Madras High Court upheld the decision of government on the ban.

The ban also lead to several dramatic developments, including a sentimental Haasan revealing his financial crisis if the movie is not released which created huge hues and cries from his fans and the film industry across the country. The actor even said that his house and earnings are at stake since he has relied on financiers to produce the movie and said he would move out of the state or even the country. Later, he said that the issues and the ban has resulted in a loss of Rs 30-60 crore for him.

Following this, J Jayalalithaa coming up clearing the government's stand on the issue, who said that the movie was banned only since the government is concerned with the law and order issues the release could create unless the disputes were properly addressed. She also said that the government could be a facilitator for the producer to speak with the protesting organisations to find an amicable solution. The discussions started on Friday, came to a conclusion on Saturday evening.

The Tamil version of the movie has been showing in more than 500 screens in various parts of the country, other than Tamil Nadu. The Hindi version was released in over 1000 screens across the country from February 1, according to an official with RajKamal Films.

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