"Premam" piracy rowFacebook. Premamthefilm

The Kerala police arrested three men on Monday morning in connection with the piracy issue of Alphonse Puthran's "Premam", confirming that the film was leaked from the Censor Board office in Thiruvananthapuram. 

Arunkumar, Lijin and Kumaran, who were temporary staff at the regional Censor Board office, were arrested by the Anti-Piracy Cell of the Kerala police on 27 July for leaking "Premam" censor copy online.

The three accused had resigned from the board in June after the censor copy leak became a state-wide controversy. The pirated version of the Malayalam film carried the watermark of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), leading the investigators to look into the involvement of censor board employees.

However, the police have clarified that CBFC has no direct connection to the leak.

"In this case we have not been able to find that any Censor (Board) officer was involved," said Anti-Piracy Cell SP Pradeep Kumar.

Earlier, the police had seized 32 external storage devices, including hard disks, mobile phones and DVDs from studios in Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Chennai, where the film was edited as part of its post-production work.

Anti-Piracy Cell DySP M Iqbal told the media that the arrests were made based on substantial evidence and added that more people will be arrested in the coming days.

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