Is 'Gethu' Really a Tamil Word?

Published: 22nd January 2016 09:45 PM  |   Last Updated: 23rd January 2016 05:23 AM   |  A+A-

CHENNAI: It was perhaps the most popular word among the youth in the state. But on Friday, one of the hotly contested question in the Madras High Court was whether 'gethu' is really a Tamil word or not.

The counsel of the Red Giant Movies, which recently a movie with the word as the title, went to the extent of quoting lines from Arunagirinathar's Thiruppugal to ascertain that word is indeed a Tamil word and hence the movie deserves to be exempted from the entertainment tax.

The state government grants the exemption for movies with Tamil titles. However, it was rejected for this movie, starring Udayanidhi Stalin in the lead role, since a viewing committee, which makes the recommendation for the exemptions, considered 'gethu' as not a proper Tamil word.

When the petition filed by the Red Giant Movies came up for hearing on Friday before Justice R Mahadevan, additional government pleader Haribabu, appearing for the state government argued that the committee was right in rejection the exemption since the title is not a proper Tamil word.

Senior advocate P Wilson, appearing for Red Giant Movies, started referring to epics and ancient Tamil literatures to trace the origin of the word. He cited Arunagirinathar's Thiruppugal, a Tamil literature to argue that the word means 'proud'.

He also produced two dictionaries, compiled by professors, working as Head of Tamil Departments, and said the dictionaries have included the words. The dictionaries denoted 'gethu' stands for proud or hearty. He also produced certificates from Mu Metha, a Tamil poet, and two other organisations to support his claim.

Wilson argued that the movie was rejected the exemption due to extraneous considerations. After the government pleader sought time to file the counter arguments, the court adjourned next hearing in the case to January 27.

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