Divya Bharathi, who made the documentary Kakkoos about manual scavengers, has said that she has recently received several hate calls for her depiction of a backward caste community in the film, The Hindu reported. She said the calls were mostly derogatory and many callers had threatened to kill her or rape her.

Several callers were critical about the portrayal of members of a Scheduled Caste community, Devendrakula Vellalar, in Kakkoos. Bharathi said, “The film was not to insult any community, but a searing criticism of the government and the society at large for forcing a section of the underprivileged people to do the inhuman task of manual scavenging.” She added that many of the calls were from members of right-wing groups, including the Bharatiya Janata Party.

Bharathi was arrested on July 25 for a case registered against her in 2009. She was later let out on bail. In 2009, Bharathi and six others had participated in a protest against a Dalit student’s death because of lack of proper medical attention at Government Rajaji Hospital.