Bharathi Kannamma

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Bharathi Kannamma
Directed byCheran
Produced byHenry
Written byCheran
Music byDeva
Edited byK. Thanikachalam
Pankaj Productions
Distributed byPangaj Productions
Release date
  • 15 January 1997 (1997-01-15)
Running time
168 minutes

Bharathi Kannama is a 1997 Indian Tamil language drama film directed by Cheran and starring Parthiban and Meena in the lead roles.[1] The film marks Cheran's debut as a director and screenwriter. It was well received critically and commercially upon release. Prabhu Solomon remade this film in Kannada as Usire (Kannada) (2001) with V. Ravichandran.


The story revolves around Bharathi (Parthiban), a low-caste worker for a rich landlord Vellaisamy Thevar (Vijayakumar). At the local fair Vellaisamy's daughter, Kanamma (Meena), begins to love him after he saved her from thugs at the fair. Bharati's sister, Pechi (Indhu), accompanies him to the fair and wants some anklets that Bharati cannot afford. However, when they return and Pechi goes to collect their food for the night, Kanamma doesn't serve them until the rest leave and then gives Pechi anklets. This is seen by Bharati, who falls in love with her. During this time, Pechi is in love with Vellaisamy's son and successfully forms a relationship with him.

Vellaisamy thinks of getting his daughter married and finds a suitable candidate. The day of the ponnu paarkura, Kannamma starts a fire causing the groom's side to view the alliance as inauspicious. Afterwards Kanamma is treated for her burns by Bharati. Kanamma writes in her diary about her love for Bharati, but is discovered by Vellaisamy. Although her tears blurred Bharati's name, Vellaisamy beats up his daughter and discovers she loves Bharati. He abuses him, telling him to forget Kanamma, and tells him to leave. Later, Bharati tells Kanamma that their relationship could not work out due to caste difference, which was overheard by Vellaisamy. Afterwards, Vellaisamy rushes back to hear his mother, who had a heart attack, wish to see Kanamma married. He consults astrologers who assure him of a match, while Kanamma remains depressed. When driving some of his master's goods through a forest, he is stopped by Maayan, who hears of Kanamma's marriage and says he will stop it.

An unwilling Kanamma is taken the goat sacrifice, and Bharati encourages her to accept her new husband, although he does so with great regret. During the sacrifice of the goat, Kanamma hallucinates that she led Bharati before her father and he killed him. Maayan, along with his gang, makes a plan for stopping the wedding. Throughout preparations for the wedding, Bharati doesn't speak to Kanamma, but the night before Pechi delivers a coconut and herbs for her burn medication to Kanamma and consoles her. She goes back home and angrily scolds Bharati for neglecting Kanamma because of his master and their caste difference. She tells Bharati to stop Kanamma from potentially killing herself, and he runs towards her. Maayan and his gang come to the village and attack Bharati, but the gang is defeated. However, Bharati, delayed by fighting Maayan's gang, is unable to come to Kanamma and stop her from committing suicide, and right after he finishes off Maayan a man runs in telling of the tragedy. The whole village is weeping, and Vellaisamy sobs to Bharati about their shared misery. Pechu is even more distraught when she realizes that Kanamma killed herself by ingesting the herbs she brought her. Bharati silently cries at his lover's feet. He beats the parai at her funeral, unable to speak. After Vellaisamy is guided to light the torch, and all go to bathe in the river, Bharati, reminiscing on their love, yells "Kannamma," throws himself on Kanamma's funeral pyre and burns with her. An anguished Vellaisamy and the other villagers grieve again for Bharati, and Vellaisamy questions why he was so taken in by caste pride. The film ends years later with an older, and wiser, Vellaisamy joyfully greeting his son, Pechi and their kids at the train station.



The music composed by Deva.[2]

No. Song Singers Lyrics Length (m:ss)
1 Chinna Chinna Kanamma Febi Mani Vairamuthu 05:16
2 Naalethu Padhuchavare Swarnalatha Vairamuthu 01:54
3 Poonkatre Poonkatre K. J. Yesudas Vaali 05:28
4 Rayula Bullet Railu Vadivelu Vaali 04:34
5 Retakili Rekkai Mano, S. P. Sailaja Vairamuthu 05:04
6 Thendralukku Theriyuma Arun Mozhi, K. S. Chithra Vairamuthu 05:14
7 Vaady Patti Melamada Gangai Amaran Vairamuthu 02:39


During its release, the film ran into trouble as Thevar community who almost imposed a ban of the film due to its content.[3] In spite of controversies, the film became successful at box-office.[4]


  1. ^ "Bharathi Kannamma". cinesouth. Retrieved 10 October 2013.
  2. ^ "Bharathi Kannamma Songs". raaga. Retrieved 10 October 2013.
  3. ^ Pillai, Sreedhar (1998). "Mandal and movies". Sunday. pp. 55–57.
  4. ^ Nambath, Suresh (28 December 2003). "The politics of art". The Hindu. Retrieved 4 May 2019.

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