Charlie Chaplin in Rural India

Movie directors will go to any ‘height’ to seek publicity. One Hemnath Hegde wants to install a 62-foot statue of Charlie Chaplin as the backdrop for two Kannada movie song sequences. He wants to offer that as a permanent contribution to rural Karnataka and hopefully get into the Guiness Book of World Records.

When locals complain they don’t want this 62-ft statue of someone who they don’t even know in their town, the director stokes fires of Hindu-Christian antagonism. Get real, Mr Movie Director!

Has the director considered disposable materials to make his statue and dismantling it just like he’d any studio set? And really, just because he wants to get in the Guiness Book of World Records, doesn’t mean he can run roughshod over local community sentiments.

Would you want your rural landscape marred by a 62-ft Charlie Chaplin ogling down at you every morning? (Please take poll below.) This is approximately the height of a 5-storey building in an area where the average houses are single storeys. Ooops, he wants to place this statue on a popular beach, near the entrance to a temple! This is about common sense and nothing to do with religion.

The equivalent would be if a movie director wanted to place a 62-ft statue of Bollywood star Shahrukh Khan on Myrtle Beach in South Carolina! Not going to happen!

Mr Movie director, please take your statue somewhere else, and really, we are NOT going to watch your movie either! 🙂

Changing topics.
Wish more Indians will focus on important issues facing our children. A recent article in the NYTimes, reports that child malnutrition rates in India are worse than in some sub-saharan African countries.

“In China, … just 7 percent of its children under 5 are underweight, a critical gauge of malnutrition. In India, by contrast, despite robust growth and good government intentions, the comparable number is 42.5 percent. Malnutrition makes children more prone to illness and stunts physical and intellectual growth for a lifetime.”

Sadly, the elite Indian media and bloggers are silent on this travesty and wasting ink on the statue!

19 thoughts on “Charlie Chaplin in Rural India

Add yours

  1. 3 relevant articles from Rajeev Srinivasan And Co’s blog:
    “let them put up a statue of a clown (say karunanidhi or laloo) near the vatican first”

    “more on the charlie chaplin statue: it was illegal too”

    – The following explains a case of *another* deliberately-positioned statue:
    (For those interested, the actual topic of the above link is then further discussed at )

  2. I’m from the US, I know who Charlie Chaplin is, and I sure as heck wouldn’t want a 62 foot statue of him in my town. Now, see if the director can turn that statement into a Hindu/Christian antagonism. The director can digitize a statue of Chaplin for far less money, and not destroy the character of the area. It’s obscene to spend money on something like that to appease the director’s ego.

    1. Thank you Grace for sharing your thoughts. Apologize for the delay in replying!

      As you rightly pointed out, Directors have several options for creating the backgrounds on their movies and most use computer generated scenes. I get the impression that this Director (not well know) was trying to pull a publicity stunt to get himself more press. – But with such a horrible idea! We should organize a silent boycott of this guy!

      Thank you

  3. How about a statue of ManMohan Singh riding off to battle against against the Pakistani Army terrorists?

    Much cheaper – all you need is an empty pedestal with a tape recorder playing a mumbling sound.

  4. we have enough statues in India.. not one more… they can do something more contructive … like get into the record books by building the biggest rural school 😉 … may give the director some good publicity … ofcourse the media will not cover stuff like this

    1. I like!
      I like the idea of a huge rural school and a clinic to take care of their health! What a fabulous idea!

      You are right, the media won’t cover it.

      Hope you guys are doing well!

  5. Oh Almighty GOD,
    Help the film-maker with some prudence and let him focus on his noble cause of film making and not satue sculpting.

    -Indian common man.

    1. Oh Thank you for echoing my sentiment!
      Yes, he needs some common sense; appears to be a shameless publicity hawk!

      particularly with all the challenge faced by the poor in India!

  6. Arun ji,


    I seek your permission to post this well written article in toto with attribution off course on my blog at


  7. Rs. 35 lakhs on a Charlie Chaplin statue??
    As you correctly said this is all about common sense.

  8. Oh my God I saw that article, the kids in that are so awfully malnourished. That too, most are manifesting with full-blown marasmus, so they’re clearly getting little to nothing. The problem with India (and all other nations facing similar problems) is not so much lack of food as it is good food distribution. It’s just a travesty that this is going on in spite of India’s continued growth otherwise.

    I may comment on this at some point on my blog. Granted, I don’t live in India and I don’t know much aside from news and a handful of personal experiences, I think it’s worth drawing attention to the issue in whatever way I can. Attention is definitely something this issue is lacking.

    1. When I first read it, I thought it was a mistake! and then the anger sets in when you realize that the politicians have been throwing money at this in a haphazard way! Aaargh!

      I just wish the local media goes after these issues in a more sustained manner. The problem likely is that indians have become insensitive to the problems of the poor.

      Absolutely do write about this!

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