Seeing how some Muslim organisations have forced the Tamil Nadu government to impose a ban on Vishwaroopam, the film's producer Kamal Haasan is mulling whether to shift to another state or even go abroad.
"I want a secular place to live, other than Tamil Nadu, is there any place? If I don't get it to live here, I will seek another secular place. If I am unable to find a secular place to stay in India, I might find another secular country. Like the way MF Hussain did," the actor told newspersons in Chennai on Jan 30, 2013.
Kamal Haasan was referring to the renowned painter who was forced into exile following strong opposition from fanatics to a few of his works. They alleged that Husain had wrongly depicted Hindu goddesses and gods. He spent the last few years of his life shuttling between Dubai, Qatar and London where he died on Jun 9, 2011.
Kamal Haasan is understandably dismayed over "cultural terrorism" and the State succumbing to pressure from even fringe groups. This has led the Kollywood icon to consider relocating but the choices before him are limited.
As the main charge against Vishwaroopam is that it allegedly shows the minority community in a bad light, he cannot hope for a favourable reception in nations where Muslims form a significant part of the population. This rules out Indonesia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Maldives and almost the entire Middle East with the exception of Israel.
As far as Pakistan is concerned, Islamabad will not extend the red carpet to Kamal Haasan because of the same reason. Sri Lanka has rightly or wrongly acquired the reputation of ill-treating treat Tamils. Hence he will surely give Colombo a miss.
Though Kamal Haasan has a big fan following in North America as evidenced by Vishwaroopam's successul run at the box office in the United States and Canada, he should perhaps avoid the US too since an anti-Islam film made by an Egyptian-American sparked worldwide protests in 2012.
If the actor decides to settle somewhere in Scandinavia, Sweden and Finland are the best options. Given that two Indian-origin couples recently faced much problem due to the authorities in Norway questioning the manner in which they had taken care of their children, he would probably not want to make his home in Oslo.
Denmark has already faced much trouble due to the Jyllands-Posten newspaper publishing a series of cartoons most of which depicted Prophet Muhammad. So Kamal Haasan is not likely to be welcomed by authorities in Copenhagen.
Asylum seekers generally flock to the United Kingdom. However, it is worth noting that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is still cooped up inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London.
Kamal Haasan should therefore look at mainland Europe and south America. Germany, Spain, Italy, Brazil and Argentina are the top five countries wherein he can hope to live in peace.