No obstacles to screening of ‘James’: Karnataka CM

Bengaluru, March 23 (IANS) Countering the allegations levelled by a section of Congress leaders, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said on Wednesday that there are no hurdles to the screening of the Kannada movie ‘James’ starring late superstar Puneet Rajkumar.

Speaking to mediapersons here, Bommai said that he has discussed the matter with the Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce.

“I have spoken to the Film Chamber in this regard. If there is any trouble with the screening of ‘James’, the concerned producers and theaters have the power to sort it out. I have spoken to actor Shivarajkumar too. I have requested him to bring it to my notice or to the notice of the Film Chamber if they face any problem. They too have agreed.”

The controversy was triggered on Tuesday after Congress leader Siddaramaiah alleged that ‘James’, which released on March 17, was being nudged off theatre screens in the state to make way for ‘The Kashmir Files’ at the behest of some BJP leaders.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the Assembly session, Siddaramaiah had alleged that the producer of ‘James’ had confided in him about the issue.

“Since the producers of ‘James’ have booked theatres by paying advance amounts, forcing the theatres to screen ‘The Kashmir Files’ is nothing but harassment,” Siddaramaiah had told mediapersons.

On Wednesday, state Congress chief D.K. Shivakumar too repeated the charges.

Dismissing the allegations, Bommai said, “Congress leaders have stooped to the level of politicking even on screening of cinemas.”

‘James’ is Puneeth Rajkumar’s last film as an actor. The highly-popular actor and the youngest son of thespian Rajkumar died of cardiac arrest in October last year.

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