Kunjila Mascillamani was forcibly abducted and taken to a women’s police station
The inauguration of the third International Women’s Film Festival saw dramatic scenes when director Kunjila Mascillamani, who staged a protest on stage, was forcibly removed by police. Kunjila was protesting the exclusion of his film Asanghatithar (part of the Freedom Fight anthology) from the film festival. The police dragged her off the stage even as she shouted slogans against the Kerala government. The three-day film festival is hosted by Kerala State Chalachitra Academy (KSCA) in Kozhikode.
Kunjila was taken for a medical examination at Kozhikode Beach Hospital and then taken to the women’s police station. Speaking to TNM, she said: ‘I was roughed up. The police didn’t even say if they registered an arrest. She made recordings of her abduction from a police vehicle and also posted footage on her Facebook account. reports showed four or five policewomen carrying her from the scene to a jeep parked outside. As she was dragged, Kunjila shouted that TP Chandrasekharan had been killed by the CPI(M) and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had lied.
In one of his FB posts, shared earlier today, Kunjila posted a screenshot of his message, apparently to KSCA President Ranjith. In the text message, she asked for details about the committee, the curators who selected the films for the Women’s Film Festival in Kozhikode, and the selection process. She also asked him why Asanghatithar was kicked out of the film festival. The film Asanghatithar depicts the real struggle of women for the dignity of labor and for toilets in the shops of Kozhikode.
Later, during the inauguration event, Ranjith said that the festival does not have funds to buy films from OTT platforms and display them. Although Ranjith did not refer to Kunjila or his film, a source who was part of the event told TNM that he was trying to explain why Kunjila’s film was not listed in the event. .