Darshan bail denial puts film producers under pressure

BANGALORE: The first additional chief metropolitan magistrate rejected Sandalwood actor Darshan’s bail application, putting in suspense the fate of a number of Kannada film projects in various stages of completion and frustrating the produces who have invested big bucks on the saleability of the star.

Also, in case the ‘Challenging Star’ (as Darshan is known in Sandalwaood) is put behind bars, the disgrace would tarnish his image and influence cine goers and, hence, the fate of the films.

The Sessions court judge R.B. Budihal rejected the bail plea of Darshan, arrested on September 9 for beating up his wife Vijayalakshmi and threatening to murder her and the couple‘s three-year-old son, on the public prosecuter’s contention that Darshan could bring pressure on the complainant, even on witnesses and tamper with evidence.

Darshan’s lawyers will have to move the court for bail under Section 439 of the Criminal Procedure Code, once they get certified copies from the court,In the meantime, the doctors attending on Darshan at the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases announced that the actor was fit and ready for discharge by Wednesday afternoon.

Besides the four film projects mentioned earlier - ‘Kranthiveera Sangoli Rayanna’; ‘Virat’, ‘Chingari’ and ‘Sarathi’ - some of the other projects include ‘Bul Bul’ which is at the pre-production stage. Also, before his arrest a number of producers were in the queue, waiting to make films with Darshan, since he was one of the few bankable actors in Kannada with a tremendous fan support.

Earlier, the Kannada Film Producers Association (KFPA) had withdrawn the ban on Darshan’s co-star Nikitha Thukral, because of the pressure from the late Dr. Rajkumar’s family – his three sons who are also actors and Dr. Rajkuma’s wife. The Rajkumar family, known as the first family of Sandalwood, wields considerable power in Kannada filmdom as well as within the state.

The KFPA had banned Thukral for a period of three years from acting in Kannada films based on Darshan’s wife Vijaylakshmi’s complaint. Vijalakshmi held Thukral for the marital discord in her life as the ‘other woman’ in her husband’s life. Thukral has denied any relationship with Darshan other than a professional one as a co-star.

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