Chennai/Kochi: Facing mounting political pressure amid an intensifying row over the Mullaperiyar dam, Tamil Nadu government on Thursday banned controversial Hollywood film 'Dam 999', whose director now plans to move the Supreme Court.

The government banned the film on the grounds that it can disturb cordial ties between the state and Kerala and create law and order problem.

"The title of the film candidly refers to the Mullaperiyar Dam row (between Tamil Nadu and Kerala). Since it is capable of creating panic among people over the collapse of the dam and divide people of the two states, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has directed banning the screening of the movie," Chief Secretary Debendranath Sarangi said.

The film could also lead to law and order situation in Tamil Nadu, he said in a detailed statement that followed an earlier terse one-line release from him announcing the ban.

The ban was described as "totally unfortunate" by film director Sohan Roy, who said he planned to approach the Supreme Court against it because he has been given a go ahead by the Censor Board.

"This should not happen to any movie or creative work in India. Such actions will kill creative minds," Roy, who is in Dubai in connection with the film release in UAE, said.

He said 'Dam 999' is a film with a 'social cause', which describes hazards dams can cause and creates awareness among the masses about the impending dangers of a dam collapse if not attended to on time.

The ban would send "wrong signals", he said and pointed out there was not a word mentioning 'Mullaiperiyar' or the issue in the film.

The ban on Dam 999, due for November 25 release, comes even as the two states are locked in a war of words over the 116-year-old Mullaperiyar dam, which Kerala wants brought down to build a new one but is being opposed by Tamil Nadu.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa had on Wednesday shot off a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, asking him to advise Kerala not to whip up fear among its people for political mileage as the dam is as "safe and good as new".

An all-party meet in Kerala on Wednesday convened by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy had taken note of recurrence of tremors in the dam's vicinity and asked the Centre to intervene to resolve the issue.

Sarangi said the film story revolves around collapse of a weak dam constructed by a corrupt mayor with scenes portraying death of many people, including the young and old. "The title Dam 999 seems to refer to the Mullaperiyar Dam (in which Tamil Nadu holds lease rights for 999 years)," he said.

Quoting reported remarks of the director, he said Roy had stated that Tamil Nadu government would cooperate with Kerala on construction of a new dam after watching his film.

"Though the dam has not directly been portrayed in the film, scenes shot in Alappuzha in Kerala remind one of the dam," he said.

'Dam 999' has generated lot of heat in political circles in Tamil Nadu with opposition DMK, MDMK and PMK raising the pitch for its ban, claiming it is against the state's interest besides possibly damaging ties between the people of the two states.

The Tamil Nadu Theatre Owners' Association had announced they would not screen the film as they thought it was against the state's interests.

'Dam 999' is the second film to be banned in Tamil Nadu after Hollywood movie 'Da Vinci Code'. The Tom Hanks starrer, an adoption of the best-selling novel by the same name, was banned by the erstwhile DMK government following appeals from Christian organisations.

The dam in Idukki district of Kerala is under Tamil Nadu's control and meets the irrigation needs of farmers in southern districts.

(Agencies)