KOZHIKODE:As the work on the bust of Mollywood’s evergreen hero Prem Nazir has been dragging for close to a decade, the film fraternity is all set to approach the state government to bring its attention to the issue for a speedy resolution.
It was in 2006 that the film fraternity, under the leadership of actor Suresh Gopi, decided to install a bust of Prem Nazir in the capital city as a tribute to the actor. “We thought it was necessary to erect the statue of Nazir sir in Thiruvananthapuram itself as he is from the city. We consider it as a way to pay homage to such a great artist,” says Suresh Gopi.
Noted sculptor Jeevan Thomas was assigned to sculpt the bust of the actor. Suresh Gopi says that Jeevan was assigned the task with a budget of Rs 14 lakh. “Following that he started the work on the bust at my plot in Thiruvananthapuram. Though the initial work was at a normal pace, later it became very slow. In the meantime he had collected a total of Rs 16 lakh for the project,” says Suresh Gopi. Following a discussion with the film fraternity in July 2012, Jeevan had signed on an agreement that the work will be completed before March 31, 2013.
Producer B Rakesh signed the agreement on behalf of the film representatives. Rakesh says that the agreement was signed by quoting Rs 20 lakh as remuneration for the work.
“Jeevan had said we should give him a total of Rs 20 lakh as remuneration as the rate of raw materials had increased compared to 2006. So we agreed to his demand and said that the balance amount would be paid once he completed the work,” Rakesh says.