Lyricist Vairamuthu returns ONV Award, amid mounting outrage over the decision to pick him
Following the award announcement, three days ago, social media had responded with outrage, given the MeToo allegations on the lyricist
Lyricist Vairamuthu has announced that he is returning the prestigious ONV Award, following ONV Cultural Academy President Adoor Gopalakrishnan's statement that the jury would be reconsidering their original decision.
A strong backlash arose on the internet when the award was announced, given that as many as 17 women had previously alleged sexual harrassment by the lyricist. Singer-voice actor Chinmayi, one among the 17 women, and actor Parvathy were the first celebrities to denounce the decision to present this renowned award to Vairamuthu.
In his latest video and written statement, Vairamuthu has declared that he would be returning the award himself, as he considered the ongoing controversy to be a slight to his image and that of the late poet ONV. "I heard that the jury has second thoughts about the decision to confer me with this award, following the actions of those who hold a grudge against me. I don't want to put the esteemed jury in a tough spot. So, I have decided to decline the award amidst such controversy."
He went on to add, "I want to register here very strongly that I am being extremely truthful. Nobody needs to doubt that."
Vairamuthu also requested the ONV Cultural Academy to give the prize amount of Rs 3 lakhs to the Kerala CM Relief Fund and further added that he would be contributing Rs 2 lakhs from his side.
He ended the statement by thanking MK Stalin, the CM of Tamil Nadu, for congratulating him on his win.