Members of the Indian film industry in Tamil Nadu state is on a day-long fast to protest against the jailing of former chief minister Jayaram Jayalalitha.
Jayaram Jayalalitha has been jailed for four years for corruption and is in a Bangalore prison.
She has challenged her conviction and applied for bail. The Bangalore high court will hear her plea on October 6.
In a case lasting 18 years, Jayaram Jayalalitha was found guilty of amassing unaccounted wealth of more than $10 million.
In its ruling on September 27, the special court in Bangalore also ordered her to pay a 1 billion rupee ($16 million) fine and resign as chief minister.
A former film actress, Jayaram Jayalalitha is one of India’s most colorful and controversial politicians and has a huge following in Tamil Nadu.
On September 30, actors, directors and other members of the Tamil film industry began a day-long silent fast in the state capital, Chennai, to express “support and solidarity” for Jayaram Jayalalitha.
All the cinemas are shut in the city until the evening and all film shoots have been cancelled for the day.
Jayaram Jayalalitha’s imprisonment has dismayed her supporters who have held protests and wept openly.
One report said at least 16 people were believed to have killed themselves “either by setting themselves ablaze or by hanging” since Jayaram Jayalalitha’s sentencing.
On September 29, her successor O Paneerselvam was sworn in as chief minister – he too wept during his inauguration, with colleagues saying they were in mourning.
Jayaram Jayalalitha has denied charges of amassing wealth as false and says that she acquired property through legal means.
The case was heard in the neighboring state of Karnataka to ensure it remained free from influence or pressure.
[youtube eHX6HEOq7V4 650]