In the film “The Kerala Story,” actress Adah Sharma plays the character Shalini Unnikrishnan, inspired by the life of Nimisha, also known as Fathima Isa. After much controversy and anticipation, the movie was finally released on May 5, 2023, sparking discussions on social media and among political parties. Some criticized it as propaganda against Islam, while others praised its portrayal of the challenges faced by the highly educated state of Kerala in India. Initially, the movie claimed to be based on the true story of 32,000 women who were forcefully converted and sent to Islamic countries as ISIS recruits. However, due to the backlash, the filmmakers clarified that it revolves around the real story of three women, with Adah Sharma’s character representing Nimisha, also known as Fathima Isa. Nimisha was one of the four women from Kerala who fled to Afghanistan between 2016 and 2018 to join ISIS. She is currently imprisoned in Afghanistan after her ISIS terrorist husband was killed in an attack. Nimisha, previously known as Nimisha Sampath, disappeared from her college in Kasaragod in November 2015. She was radicalized in Kerala by a man named Abdul Rashid before leaving for Syria with her husband and others to join ISIS. Nimisha eventually moved to Afghanistan, where she surrendered to authorities with other women and children after their husbands were killed.
It is worth mentioning that Nimisha’s mother, Bindu Sampath, has appealed to the Indian government to bring her daughter back from Afghanistan. The government, however, has announced that it will not allow the return of the four Kerala women who joined ISIS. The Kerala Story has received mixed reviews from fans, with some describing it as a harrowing depiction of forced conversions and finding it eye-opening. The true story behind the film sheds light on the journey of Nimisha, Fathima Isa, and the other women who fled Kerala to join ISIS in Afghanistan, highlighting the challenges and consequences they faced.
Asifa, played by Sonia Balani, is one of the film’s most important characters because she convinces her friends to accept Islam. The actor recently discussed in an interview how her parents were furious when they saw her performance in the movie.
“I am glad that after watching the film, my parents forgot for some time after watching my acting that it is Asifa and not Sonia,” Sonia stated in an interview with Navbharat Times. We were, according to my parents, extremely enraged at you for what you’re doing with your own friends, they said. In any case, guardians are extremely steady. I was informed that you performed very well.
Sonia’s dad had before discussed her presentation in the film, where he even mentioned everybody to proceed to watch the film. ” The kind of role Sonia played, and we also wish to express our gratitude to the government and Yogi ji (Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath) for exempting the movie from taxation. What’s more, we request that adolescents watch the film however much as could reasonably be expected and spread mindfulness in the public eye. I would like to urge everyone to watch the movie, regardless of gender.
The Real Story Versus Fake ‘The Kerala Story’
There is a ton of discussion in the media about the as of late delivered highlight film ‘The Kerala Story’, which dishonestly guarantees that 32,000 ladies from Kerala were switched from Hinduism over completely to Islam and are covered in Syria and Yemen. The 138-minute film weaponises each accessible sliver of reality to make sense of why a small bunch of Indian Muslims joined the Islamic confidence or why individuals embraced Islam. Kasargod and Malappuram in Kerala have been displayed as perilous enlistment places for Islamic confidence. “Allah” shows up in the ringtone of the film’s fundamental person, Asifa’s telephone, and it is portrayed as though having a ringtone with the name of Allah is in itself something dubious or a wrongdoing. The film is about Islamophobia.
Interestingly, the Safdar Hashmi Remembrance Trust (SAHMAT) and Jansanskriti as of late coordinated the screening of a movie Innu Swantham Sreedharan (Myself, Sreedharan), coordinated by Siddik Paravoor, at Jawahar Bhawan, New Delhi. Many individuals came to watch it. The film spreads the message of adoration and fellowship. It rotates around three Hindu kids who experienced childhood in a Muslim family after their mom’s unfavorable passing. This article contrasts this and the misguided The Kerala Story.
The ‘Genuine Kerala Story’
While the discussion over the phony The Kerala Story was seething, here is a lovely component film in light of a genuine story from Malappuram of Zubeidaa and Abdul Aziz Haji, a Muslim couple from Kalikavu town of Neelambur in the Malappuram region of Kerala, who care for three offspring of their Hindu homegrown assistance Chakki, without changing over them.
Zubeidaa died in July 2019 because of kidney disease, and after two years, her significant other, Aziz Haji likewise died. This endearing story of a family has now been brought to the cinema by producer Siddique Paravoor. Innu Swantham Sreedharan (Me, Sreedharan, depends on the most youthful youngster, Sreedharan, and debuted on January 9 at Edapalli’s Vanitha Theater.
During a meeting with the media, Paravoor shared how he originally scholarly of this story in July 2019 when Sreedharan posted on Facebook about the lamentable downfall of his ‘umma’ (mother in Malayalam). The disclosure started interest and questions about how a Hindu individual could allude to his mom as ‘umma.’ accordingly, Sreedharan smoothly made sense of that his bond with his supportive Muslim guardians rose above strict names. He accentuated that adoration and harmony ought to beat strict divisions and that this inspiring story of solidarity was the “genuine pith” of Kerala.
Sreedharan told the film’s essayist, “Umma and Uppa (mother and father) had three kids, including Joshina, conceived a couple of years after we took shelter in their home. Yet, we never felt that we are unique or have a place with some other religion. The main house felt like it was my own home. I had additionally heard from older folks that the umma used to breastfeed me and Jafar together.”
Sreedharan’s biography in his Facebook present was pointed on advise individuals that the story regarding adoration and harmony is the “genuine story of Kerala”. Such examples of mutual agreement happen consistently in the state.
Sreedharan once asked his Umma and Uppa for what reason they didn’t change him and his sisters over completely to Islam. Hearing this, they turned into somewhat concerned. “She and Uppa inquired as to whether anybody misunderstood expressed anything to me. At the point when I let them know there was nothing similar to that, they made sense of that we shouldn’t allow religion to characterize anybody. He said that all religions teach exactly the same thing, that is to say, to adore and help individuals, and called attention to that people misjudge religion or its lessons.”
“Umma additionally instructed us that it doesn’t make any difference what one’s religion is. My sisters and I used to go to the sanctuary and apply sandalwood glue on our brows. It didn’t make any difference to Umma. They simply needed us not to lie, take or hurt others. Furthermore, we likewise made it a point that truly do nothing that would hurt her standing,” he said.
Sreedharan additionally knows that on the off chance that Zubeidaa had not embraced him and his sisters, their lives would have been totally different, particularly taking into account their family’s rank foundation. “We have a place with the lower station. At the point when we were growing up, individuals anticipated that we should be docile to them. This was the way of life of that time. Be that as it may, Uppa and Umma helped us against this and permitted us to live in an agreeable family. She let us know that we shouldn’t do homage anybody superfluously,” he said.
Movie chief Siddiq was shocked when he heard Zubeidaa’s endearing story subsequent to contacting her town. Everybody in her town, Kalikavu, knew and cherished her. She spent her genealogical abundance not on herself but rather on aiding the oppressed local area. Zubeidaa used to purchase garments and adornments for himself as well as his sisters. She had around 12 sections of land of land, which she gave to the poor individuals. She even took a credit to help the needy individuals. At the point when she kicked the bucket, she was under water of around Rs 28 lakh. Later his senior child reimbursed this advance.
Siddiq makes sense of, “It was Aziz Haji himself who made the primary effort of the camera. They were all glad that an ever increasing number of individuals would now be aware of Zubeidaa and the humanitarian that she was. Tragically, Aziz Haji kicked the bucket a year after the fact during the Coronavirus pandemic.”
According to chief Siddique, “Individuals are innately great. However, in some cases, we really want stories like these to help us to remember their decency. In this environment of disdain and deception, Zubeidaa should be recollected, and her story should be rehashed.”
The Phony Kerala Story
In opposition to the genuine soul of Kerala, The Kerala Story propagates deception and unwarranted publicity against the Muslim people group. This film has confronted boundless judgment, especially in Kerala, for misshaping realities and swelling figures to fuel hostile to Muslim opinions. Indeed, even senior promoter Harish Balm, addressing the producer in the continuous High Trial in regards to the film’s boycott in West Bengal, recognized the absence of bona fide information supporting the case of 32,000 changes. He conceded that the film was a fictionalized variant of occasions and proposed adding a disclaimer with that impact. “There is no bona fide information to back up the idea that the figure of changes is 32,000 or some other laid out figure” and “the film addresses the fictionalized form” of the issue will be added.
The film’s advancement by Head of the state Narendra Modi and the allowing of assessment exclusions by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)- drove state legislatures raise worries about the public authority’s contribution in spreading troublesome stories. The perilous part of this publicity is that the Modi government and BJP-managed state legislatures are associated with this sort of promulgation against the Muslim people group.
In any case, Kerala is a brilliant illustration of tranquil concurrence among networks.
A few activists and media work force have approached to answer the film’s deception. YouTuber Dhruv Rathee explained that the image of Kerala displayed in the film is misleading and outlandish. He made sense of by giving figures that even the Public Examination Organization (NIA) figures don’t demonstrate that Kerala is an unmistakable spot of enlistment for Islam. As per the NIA, six ladies turned out to be essential for the Islamic confidence in Kerala, of which three were Muslims, and three have changed over completely to Islam and out of these three, two were Christians and one Hindu. All in all, where has this disturbing figure of 32,000 ladies joining the Muslim confidence come from? This figure shows that the film is criminally against the Muslim people group and Kerala, which is accomplishing development in each part of public life.
Film entertainer John Abraham was asked by the media a long time back for what good reason Kerala isn’t ‘Modi-fied’. Abraham answered that Kerala is where sanctuaries, mosques and chapels are found a ways off of 10 meters, and individuals of all religions live respectively calmly. Thusly, there is no scorn for the sake of religion in Kerala.
Large number of stories and accounts mirror the mainstream texture of Kerala. No falsehood or mission of scorn can sully the appearance of Kerala, fabricated one step at a time by individuals of Kerala through friendly, political and opportunity battle developments.