‘Baahubali’ row: Sathyaraj “regrets” his comments against Kannadigas

Tamil actor Sathyaraj, who plays the role of Kattappa in the epic movie, has finally expressed regrets over his comments against Kannadigas that he made years ago. He also appealed for the smooth release of ‘Baahubali: The Conclusion’ in Karnataka.    

In a video statement on Friday, Sathyaraj said, “Nine years ago, I voiced my opinion during the Cauvery row. People in Karnataka burnt my effigies for my strong comments. I have been told that my comments back then had hurt the sentiments of Kannadigas. I deeply regret to have made such comments.”

The actor however, asserted that he will continue to lend his voice for the welfare of Tamilians. “I will continue to fight for Tamils for any worthy cause. If any producer or director looks at me as a liability after this controversy, I request them to not cast me in their films,” Sathyaraj added in the video.

Pro-Kannada groups led by activist Vatal Nagaraj have threatened to stall the release of the S S Rajamouli directorial, unless Sathyaraj tenders an apology for his “derogatory” comments against Kannadigas during the Cauvery water row nine years ago.

“…All Tamil actors voiced their opinions over the sharing of Cauvery water and protested, but Sathyaraj was particularly derogatory. This man’s remarks crossed all decency limits. He spoke nonsense about Karnataka and Kannadigas. We too staged protests against Tamil Nadu, but not against the people,” Vatal Nagaj had earlier told a daily.

“We will not allow any theatre in Karnataka to screen ‘Baahubali’. We will storm theatres that may screen the upcoming movie, which is due for release on April 28,” he said. Though the protestors agreed to reconsider their decision if the actor apologises, Vatal said, “But it will depend on the kind of apology he makes.”

Pro-Kannada groups will meet in Bengaluru today to decide on whether to allow release of 'Baahubali 2' after the "wholehearted regret" expressed by Sathyaraj. "We will meet and announce our decision tomorrow," Vatal Nagaraj said in response to Sathyaraj's statement.