Southern superstar and filmmaker Kamal Haasan on Thursday thanked his fans for supporting him during the ongoing dispute with the Tamil Nadu government over the release of his film 'Vishwaroopam' in the state over its alleged content that has been branded as anti-Muslim community.
Haasan made the comments on a day when Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa broke her silence and said she halted the release of ´Vishwaroopam´ in the state fearing violence based on intelligence reports and not for any grudge against the actor-filmmaker.
Haasan said he is thankful to Jayalalithaa for breaking her silence on the issue.
"I just thanked that my Chief Minister (Jayalalithaa) has come came forward. She had nothing to do with it," Haasan told reporters ahead of the premiere of the film here.
Thanking his fans and media, he said: "I am overwhelmed, grateful and touched by the support of the fans...The amount of support I got from Muslim community was unbelievable."
Haasan thanked the media and said: "It was very arrogant of me to say I was standing alone. You were with me, I am thankful to the media."
He urged people of the country to not to ´disrespect´ artists.
"I am requesting to India that we have lot of work to do to take the country forward and these kind of squabbling will not take us forward," Haasan said.
The superstar said he was not sorry for saying that he would leave the country.
"If this happens again, I would seriously think of leaving the country...I am not threatening. I am hurt," Haasan said.
Jayalalithaa earlier in the day said she halted the release of Haasan´s ´Vishwaroopam´ in Tamil Nadu fearing violence based on intelligence reports.
"We rely on intelligence inputs and it says there is likely to be trouble and violence in certain place due to such and such places. So it is for us to take preventive steps," Jayalalithaa said.
"Our primary objective was to maintain only law and order. We have no motive to curb freedom of speech," she said, asking Haasan to reach an amicable solution with the Muslim groups.
"I have no personal grudge against anyone," she said, adding that if at all she had an adversary it is her political adversary M Karunanidhi of DMK whose family made films she could have targetted instead of going for Haasan.
"If the leaders of the Muslim organizations and Kamal Haasan can sit together and work out amicably and if agrees to delete some objectional portion the decks will be cleared for release and we will do everything to facilitate it," said Jayalalithaa addressing media on Thursday.
She said the movie was to release in 524 theatres and it would be impossible to offer protection, ruling out any question in curbing freedom of speech.