Kollywood vs Pirates: Civil War Takes New Turn
The Tamil film industry is combatting piracy in what seems like a long war. The rivalry is such that both the parties have issued warnings to each other publicly. But so far, producers have not been successful to shut down piracy sites like Tamilrockers and Tamilgun. So in another attempt cut these movie pirates to size, Kollywood is now overtly identifying those who run these websites.
The Tamil Nadu Producers Council along with production houses Studio Green, owned by Gnanavel Raja and Vishal Film factory, owned by the Thupparivaalan actor Vishal Krishna, have released pictures of two men allegedly part of piracy-promoting sites. In an ad released on Facebook, they shared pictures of Aravinth Logeshwaran, and Dixon Raj Arumuga Swamy, and announced a reward for anyone who traces these people down. As per the ad, Aravinth Logeshwaran, the moderator of Tamilrockers, was last seen in Switzerland. Dixon Raj Arumuga Swamy, the moderator of Tamilgun and Tamildbox, is based out of UK, and routinely release south Indian movies online through these popular piracy sites. The advertisement comes soon after the Chennai police arrested a man named Gauri Shankar, who is allegedly the administrator of piracy web hub Tamilgun. Ahead of the release of his film Thupparivaalan, superstar Vishal tipped the Chennai police about one of the admins of an infamous Tamil film piracy website and got him arrested. Gowri Shankar has been identified as the admin of Tamilgun.in by the Triplicane Police. Besides Tamilgun.in, administrators of 33 other fishy websites including some porn sites have also been booked and currently being questioned by the Chennai city crime branch.
Vishal Krishna has been on the forefront in fighting the piracy plague in the Tamil film industry for quite some time now. In 2014, he was reported to have raided a video shop in Tirupur and got hold of pirated CDs. As an actor and producer he has spoken against Tamilrockers.com several times in the recent past. As soon as he was elected as the head of Tamil Nadu Producers Council, he issued a warning to the torrent site. The controversial website has streamed mega budget movies like Baahubali, Singam 3 and Premam live, illegally. At a nominal membership, most of these sites provide access to pirated versions, live streaming and good quality prints of movies that have just released in theatres. In fact, they also leaked Ajith's latest venture Vivegam on the day of its release.
Given the menace of piracy and the lack of revenue generation due to it, producers strongly believe that unmasking these anonymous groups is a big win.