Kanchi seer issue: Protesting DK, VCK men held

It was a day of protests in front of Kanchi Sankara Mutt after its junior pontiff Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi was caught in a row over not standing up for Tamil anthem. Hundreds of activists belonging to Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam and Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi were arrested by the police when they tried to besiege the Mutt fortified with heavy police security.
Kanchi seer issue: Protesting  DK, VCK men held
Tamil Desiya Munnani workers protest against Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi in Rameswaram on Thursday

Chennai

Political leaders too persisted with their demands for an apology from Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi, while the Left parties and Naam Thamizhar Katchi joined them. MDMK general secretary Vaiko, who paid floral tributes to the martyrs of anti-Hindi agitation, reiterated that the pontiff should apologise for his conduct. VCK leader Thol Thirumavalavan asked the state government to take legal action on the junior Sankaracharya.
Dravidar Kazhgam president K Veeramani recalled that state had issued an order in 1970 making it mandatory for people to stand up when the Tamil anthem is played. He asked the state to file a case against the pontiff.
The CPM said the explanations given by the Sankara Mutt was not acceptable and condemned the Mutt chief. “Mutt chiefs are not above Constitution and honouring the national symbols. Justifying such conduct had increased recently,” the party noted.
CPI state secretary R Mutharasan, issued a statement saying that the explanation given by the Mutt had added fuel to the fire and insisted that the Swamigal should apologise, instead of prolonging the row. He also asked, “Why Governor Banwarilal Purohit is silent on the issue, since it happened in his presence?”
Naam Thamizhar Katchi leader P Seeman asked, “Why those who demanded apology from Vairamuthu for his comments on Andal are keeping silent when Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi insulted Tamil?” He also hit out at actor Kamal Haasan for trying to evade the issue instead of condemning the chief of the mutt.
Complaints filed
Tamil organisations filed a complaint against Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam and also staged protest against him, on Thursday. Tamil Puligal party filed a complaint against the seer with Madurai City Police Commissioner. Meanwhile, in Rameswaram, members of Tamil Desiya Munnani staged a protest by entering the Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam premises. Police averted a clash with the staff by moving the protesters out of the premises. The math management too filed a complaint against the protesters.
Union, state ministers express differing views
A Union Minister and two state Ministers on Thursday expressed different views in the ongoing controversy of Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi allegedly insulting ‘Tamil Thai Vazhthu.’
Union Minister Pon Radhakrishnan defended the seer and said, “He is known for his contributions to Tamil and wherever he goes he speaks high of the language. The seer has not the slightest intention to insult ‘Tamil Thai Vazhthu’ and he is not such a person, who will hurt the sentiments of Tamil people.”
When asked about the protests against the spiritual leader, Radhakrishnan replied, “Everyone knows who is kindling the protesters.”
Meanwhile, state Minister for Co-operation Sellur K Raju too brushed aside the issue by stating, “Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi Swamigal is a man of high dignity and he usually respects people around him. When the Sankara Mutt has issued an explanation that the junior pontiff was meditating when the ‘Tamil Thai Vazhthu’ was played, there is no need to speak further about the issue.”
Raju refused to reply when pointed out that the seer rose up for the National Anthem during the function.
However, state Minister for Information and Publicity Kadambur C Raju took objection and said, “It is the duty of all in the state to stand up during ‘Tamil Thai Vazhthu’ irrespective of their stature. Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi Swamigal himself should provide a proper explanation on the issue.”

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