Forget the Telugu states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, it was Kolar in Karnataka which has become a centre-stage for fan rivalry reminscing the situation in early 60s and 70s when NTR vs ANR dominated the Telugu fans.
Following an argument, a fan of popular Telugu actor Pawan Kalyan on Sunday was stabbed to death by a fan of Jr NTR in a bar, said local Vemgal police. The deceased, 24-year-old Vinod Kumar, is an ardent follower and member of Pawan Kalyan’s political party Jana Sena and he gave an open speech at a function before the event that had reportedly angered other fans of actor Junior NTR who were present.
Later, the fans of both sides went to a bar and a heated argument over “Who is great” started when a fan of Jr NTR removed a knife and stabbed Vinod, killing him in the mishap. The accused was arrested by the police immediately.
On hearing this, Pawan Kalyan went to Tirupati and met the family of the deceased and expressed his consolation. He even told a local Telugu new channel ABN Telugu: “Killing in the name of fandom is wrong. It’s not just about my fans, it can be about fans of any actor.”
In Telugu, cutting across state borders, Telugu filmfield is pervasive with ardent fans of Pawan Kalyan, Jr NTR, Mahesh Babu taking out their ire against the other whenever a film of their icon failed. Jr NTR is the grandson of late NT Rama Rao and Pawan Kalyan is the brother of Telugu actor Chiranjeevi. Both have numerous hit films to their credit and lakhs of fans among the Telugus.