As many as 14 actresses on Sunday said they will not join the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists (AMMA) as it lacks any fairness, a week after the members of the association revoked the suspension of actor Dileep, accused of kidnapping an actress. The 14 active members of the recently-formed Women in Cinema Collective (WCC) took the decision even as superstar Mohanlal, who heads AMMA, said on Saturday that there was no vested interest in taking back Dileep.
Also, two Kannada film bodies — the Kannada Film Industry and the Film Industry for Rights & Equality — on Sunday wrote to AMMA expressing their displeasure in the manner in which Dileep’s suspension was revoked. In a Facebook post, the actresses, including Amala Akkineni, Archana Padmini, Divyaprabha, Sajitha Madathil and Jolly Chirayath, wrote: “It has been a year since the WCC was formed by women from various facets of the Malayalam film industry and we decided to become members as we knew the issues of women will be addressed by WCC.
“We decided not to take membership in AMMA because when there is no pay parity between males and females in the industry, all have to pay an entry membership fee of Rs 1 lakh which is not justified. “It has become difficult to believe the organisation given their stand towards the victim in the actress kidnap case… besides it’s tough to go forward with any sort of meaningful discussion on women issues.” The actresses said that after realising that there is nothing positive in the horizon, “as no meaningful discussion can take place because it’s caught between certain groups, fans associations and it fails to have a humane approach towards issues concerning women, we are unable to take membership in AMMA”.
The WCC has been vocal about the issue since last Sunday when the annual general body meeting of AMMA decided to revoke the suspension of Dileep ordered last year, saying it did not follow the guidelines of AMMA. Earlier, Rima Kallingal, Remya Nambisan and Geetu Mohandas, all of whom are leading lights in the Malayalam film industry, resigned from AMMA. This was followed by actresses Revathy, Padmapriya, and A. Parvathy writing to AMMA General Secretary Edavela Babu, demanding an emergency executive meeting of AMMA on July 13 or 14.