On Wednesday morning, many cinema halls — mostly in North Chennai — that displayed banners of the controversial Kamal Haasan-starrer Vishwaroopam were attacked

The first incident took place at AGS Cinemas near Villivakkam bus terminus when a group came to enquire if the movie would be screened.

“We said we would not plan the release of the movie without getting an official word from the State Theatre Owners Association. But the group returned in a while and damaged the front glass, the canteen and the box office. They also tore a banner of the movie displayed outside,” said Archana Kalpathi, CEO of AGS Cinemas.

A police team led by deputy commissioner of police (Anna Nagar) Prem Anand Sinha reached the spot and carried out a preliminary probe.

The police said the attackers may have assumed the film would be screened on Wednesday following the Madras High Court lifting the initial ban imposed by the State government.

While AGS Cinemas suffered the maximum damage, a few other cinema halls in north Chennai, including Maharani, Bharat and MM, witnessed stone throwing and vandalising of posters and banners of the movie on their premises.

There were incidents of banner tearing and stone throwing in some halls in Central Chennai like Albert, Pilot and Devi theatres.

The situation remained tensed in most cinema halls in the city until Wednesday afternoon as Kamal fans gathered in the cinema halls.

A posse of police personnel were posted in the halls to prevent further incidents.

However, in the afternoon, the first bench of the Madras High Court set aside the order of a single judge passed on Tuesday night staying the ban imposed by the State government on the movie.

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