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Mammooty to play royal monarch
Malayalam superstar Mammooty is all set to don royal robes in
his next film "Pazhassi Raja".
He plays the title role of the 18th century king who fought the
British in the jungles of Wayanad in Kerala. The film is being
directed by Hariharan.
Actrees Kanika will star opposite Mammooty. Namita, Sneha,
Shreya and Nayantara were considered for the role but it was
Kanika who was finally selected.
According to Kanika, she was chosen because of her appearance in
royal attire in a song in Tamil film "Varalaru".
Mammootty denies encroachment
By Chitra Prakash,
Chennai, May 23 Malayalam superstar Mammootty has denied
allegations by the Congress party in Kerala that he had
constructed buildings on encroached lands in the hill station of
Munnar and Kochi.
In a statement issued from Chennai, where he is shooting for his
next film "Pazhassi Raja", Mammootty said: "I do not possess any
unlawfully acquired land in Kerala or any other state."
He added that if any lapse had occurred in any land dealings
without his knowledge, he was "prepared to return the land
without any condition".
The state government authorised large-scale demolition of
illegal encroachments in Munnar earlier this month. Over two
dozen illegal tourist resorts have been razed since the drive
Mammootty has been the target of a Congress campaign ever since
he participated in a public rally of the Communist Party of
India-Marxist's (CPI-M) youth wing a couple of weeks back.
The veteran actor had addressed thousands of youth who had
gathered in Chennai for the eighth national conference of the
Democratic Youth Federation India (DYFI).
However, the actor clarified that he had no intention of joining
any political party.
"I spoke at the DYFI conference only as an ordinary citizen of
India. I did not level any charge in my speech against any
particular leader or movement," he explained.
Observers are keenly watching whether Mammootty's statement puts
an end to the Congress campaign or on the other hand, if he gets
drawn into politics. Film stars in Kerala have maintained a
distance from politics, unlike their counterparts in Tamil Nadu
and Andhra Pradesh.