Chennai: The wife and son of Bangaru Adigalar, the famous godman who heads a religious cult and owns huge tracts of properties and several educational institutions in Melmaruvathur, a town on the Chennai-Trichy highway, have filed their nominations for the rural local body elections in Chengalpattu district.
While 49-year-old G B Senthil Kumar has filed his nomination for the post of village panchayat president of Melmaruvathur that comes under the Sithamur panchayat union, 74-year-old Lakshmi had filed her papers for ward no II of Melmaruvathur.
Senthil Kumar, as per the declaration given by him in the nomination, is the son of Bangaru Adigalar, and Lakshmi is the wife of the celebrated godman.
The nominations by the family members of the most powerful man in Melmaruvathur could help the religious cult swing many decisions in its favour as the Adhiparasakthi Siddhar Peedam had been expanding its base all over the place for the past four decades.
Many political leaders and people holding constitutional posts have visited the massive temple at Melmaruvathur and expressed their association with the Adhiparasakthi Siddhar Peedam over the years, enabling its growth.
Now if the family members of Bangaru Adigalar, who started the cult, are to occupy the post in the local bodies, many decisions on civic issues could be taken in favour of the Peedum, facilitating Bangaru Adigalar to have a free run, the locals fear.
It should be noted that the Peedum was instrumental in developing the railway station at Melmaruvathur, giving it a face lift, and also ensuring that many trains stopped there for the benefit of the devotees visiting the temple.
That the members of the family that runs the cash-rich religious cult have now sought their entry into the local bodies could not be an indicator to their political aspirations to enter the State Assembly and Parliament in due course.
For, the cult has a wide following which is evident from the crowds that gather at the temple, arriving there on trains and buses dressed in their quintessential red attire....