Rinu Srinivasan, arrested last month for ‘liking’ a post, is now singing about the charms of the social networking site in a Tamil album to be released soon

On New Year’s day, a song in Tamil celebrating the magic of Facebook will hit the internet and one of its singers, has an interesting connection to the social networking site.

Rinu Srinivasan, who was arrested in Mumbai last month for sharing and liking a Facebook post will star in the video. “The song is called ‘Facebook Mania’ and was planned almost three months ago. It has nothing to do with the controversy,” says Rinu. The song was recorded and shot at a studio in Thirumangalam.

Last month, Rinu and a friend, Shaheen Dhada, were arrested for a Facebook post put up by the latter criticising the shutdown in Mumbai following Bal Thackeray’s death.

“The song describes how Facebook has changed lives and made us connect with people in different ways,” says Sumith Menon, an IT professional, who has composed the song and sung it, along with Rinu.

The song is part of a music album titled ‘One Roof’ and will be released in four languages — Hindi, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam. It is being produced by a group of IT professionals, led by Saroj Karoidan.

“We have already released two albums in Malayalam.  There is one with Sri Lankan artists in progress. All this would not have been possible had there been no online way to connect,” said Sumith.

Magesh Balakrishnan, the lyricist says, “The cameramen, videographers and actors in the video as well as many of the crew members are from different places and we got in touch only through online communities. We held extensive meetings online to decide everything, in order to minimise travel, he adds.

 The group got in touch with Rinu after a friend told them about her online recordings. For the 20-year-old, the last few weeks have been traumatic, and she is now hoping for some peace and quiet.

“I seem to be travelling constantly. TV shows in Delhi and other cities, interviews, now this recording,” says Rinu, who will be leaving soon for Ahmedabad.

“Shaheen and I have been invited to talk to the students of IIM-Ahmedabad. I am quite nervous. It is not as easy as music recording,” she said.

Rinu’s parents are also in Chennai for now. “Our flat in Palghar, Mumbai, has police protection all the time. There is no threat now, but it is awkward for all our neighbours. They keep asking us when the police will leave but even the policemen don’t seem to know,” said R. Srinivasan, Rinu’s father.

Rinu’s family hails from Kumarakom in Kerala but has lived in Mumbai for the past twenty years.

 Recalling the chaotic month, her father a government employee, says the most unfortunate outcome of all the chaos was the disruption in the locality. “For almost a week, after the arrest, all shops in our area remained closed. Even our domestic help did not come to our home. So many lives were disrupted, in a way because of us. That really hurt us.”

“And though we have been told the charges are dropped, we have not got the legal documents yet,” he added.

While the family will leave for Kerala soon, Rinu will pursue a two-year course in sound engineering at Muzik Lounge School of Audio Technology in Vadapalani.

“I want to go back to Mumbai after my course. It is home after all,” she says.