CHENNAI: Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has issued a show cause notice to Madhav Media, a Tamil film production house, for using computer generated snake (look-a-like of Indian cobra) in the movie trailer and poster of “Eeswaran” starring Silambarasan.
The notice was issued on November 16 by AWBI secretary SK Dutta and a copy has been forwarded to the Chairman of Central Board of Film Certification. The notice said, “It is brought to the knowledge of the Board that Eeswaran recently released its trailer and poster in which a computer generated snake (look-a-like Indian cobra) is being used without obtaining no objection certificate from the Board.
”In the poster and trailer, a snake was used as a medium of entertainment without obtaining any pre-shoot permission or NOC from the Board, which is a direct violation of the Performing Animals (Registration) Rules, 2001.
“Therefore, it is directed to you to immediately stop the circulation of the trailer and poster and submit a written explanation within 7 days of receipt of this letter for releasing the said poster and trailer without obtaining NOC from the Board,” the notice added.
In the trailer, Simbu is seen handling a Cobra, which is claimed to be a computer generated graphic. Snakes are not allowed to be used as performing animals in movies and if the charges are proven, it would be a violation under Wildlife (Protection) Act.
A formal complaint was lodged with the Forest Department by a Chennai-based animal rights activist and former member of performing animals sub-committee following the department had issued a show cause notice.
When contacted, Chennai Forest Ranger Clement Edison told Express that the production house was yet to reply to the notice.
“They claimed that it was a computer generated graphic and said approvals were obtained. But, we have asked for the relevant records. We have given them a week’s time, which ends by this weekend. Further course of action will be initiated appropriately.”