Singer Lucky Ali, actor Neil Nitin Mukesh and director Bijoy Nambiar have been under the scanner ever since the song Ya Hussain in their film David was aired.
Some members of the Muslim community have urged Bejoy to remove the song as they feel it doesn’t befit their definitions of propriety. The song was played to the accompaniment of a sequence showing a Moharram procession.
The fact that the singer Lucky Ali was also a part of the same community that objected to the song, added an even more anxious edge to the safety of the film as it approached release on February 1.
Rather than risk the wrath of the radicals, Bejoy invited members of the community to view the song sequence and judge for themselves whether it is offensive. After seeing their response, Bejoy has decided to remove the song.
Says Bejoy, “The song Ya Hussain had now been deleted from my film. Only the music has been retained.”
Bejoy says he had a long discussion with prominent members of the community, which objected the song. “They objected to the song but they were kind enough to accept my invitation to discuss the matter. After a lengthy discussion, it was decided that it would be better if I didn’t hurt anyone’s sentiments,” he says.
“If one doesn’t extend a hand of friendship, they would just go on protesting. It’s better to sort it out through discussion rather than risk protests that could harm the release of the film,” he adds.
Bejoy says there was no time to put up a fight. “I know I could fight it out but I can’t delay my film’s release. If David was a star-studded film, I could take that risk. But I can’t afford to lose my release window. The smartest thing I could do was find a compromise," he says.
Bejoy admits that the artistes involved with the song were under stress. “Lucky Ali was being hounded with messages. He, being Muslim offending his own community, was something I couldn’t deal with. Lucky requested I do something about the situation. Neil was also being hounded. I didn’t want my artistes to suffer for my creativity.”
As for the controversy over the other song Damadam mast kalandar stays in the film.
Says Bejoy, “I don’t see what the problem is .On the contrary, we’re renewing the life cycle of the legendary song. That stays.”