Thrisur (Kerala) July 22 (IANS) Veteran Malayalam writer Sukumar Azhikode feels that Mohanlal should be stripped of the honorary Lt.Colonel rank following the ongoing Income Tax (IT) raid at the Malayalam superstar’s residences and offices.
Azhikode has asked Defence Minister A.K. Antony to recommend to President Pratibha Patil to strip Mohanlal of the honorary commission in the Territorial Army.
“It is really a shame that superstars are involved in evading tax and they are doing it by exploiting their innocent fans,” Azhikode told reporters here Friday a few hours after the IT raids began at Mohanlal’s residences and offices in various cities.
The IT department sprang a surprise and arrived at the homes and offices of superstars Mohanlal and Mammootty early Friday morning and the searches for hidden wealth and undeclared income were still going on by Friday afternoon.
Mohanlal was given an honorary commission in the Territorial Army for his various roles in Malayalam films which portrayed him as a defence officer.
Mohanlal and Azhikode have been engaged in a war of words since last year when the superstar called the writer a mentally deranged person.
Azhikode filed a defamation case against Mohanlal for making the comment and a legal notice was served to Mohanlal asking him to either apologise or face legal action.
Last month Mohanlal had secured bail in the case.
The tiff started after Azhikode supported thespian Thilakan, who was served a show cause notice by Association of Malayalam Movie Artists (AMMA) and was subsequently booted out of the actors’ body on grounds of indiscipline.
Last year, Azhikode lashed out at Mohanlal and said that he has become old and should limit himself to roles matching his age and figure. He also added that Mohanlal should stop selling the recognition and popularity that he enjoyed and that he should stop making money endorsing jewellery brands.
Mohanlal hit back a few days later, saying that Azhikode must be having some “hallucinations” and that he considered his statements as some “aged uncle’s joke”. He also said that whether he should stop acting or not is none of Azhikode’s concern.
Azhikode retired as Pro-Vice Chancellor of Calicut University in 1986 and has since then kept himself busy as an orator.