68th Day Of Lockdown

Maharashtra65168280812197 Tamil Nadu2024611313157 Delhi173877846398 Gujarat1635692321007 Rajasthan83654855184 Madhya Pradesh78914444343 Uttar Pradesh77014651213 West Bengal48131775302 Andhra Pradesh3461228960 Bihar3359120915 Karnataka292299749 Telangana2499141277 Jammu and Kashmir234190828 Punjab2197194942 Odisha17239779 Haryana172194019 Kerala120957510 Assam9361044 Uttarakhand493794 Jharkhand4621914 Chhatisgarh4471021 Chandigarh2891994 Tripura2711720 Himachal Pradesh223634 Goa70420 Manipur6060 Puducherry57230 Nagaland3600 Meghalaya27121 Arunachal Pradesh310 Mizoram110 Sikkim100
Nation Politics 24 Jan 2020 Statue of Periyar va ...

Statue of Periyar vandalised in Tamil Nadu

Published Jan 24, 2020, 2:01 pm IST
Updated Jan 24, 2020, 5:49 pm IST
This comes amid uproar over veteran actor Rajinikanth's remark on social reformer Erode Venkatappa Ramasamy, commonly known as Periyar.
A statue of Periyar was found vandalised in Chengalpattu on Friday. (Photo: ANI)
 A statue of Periyar was found vandalised in Chengalpattu on Friday. (Photo: ANI)

Chennai: A statue of the late rationalist thinker E V Ramasamy 'Periyar' was found vandalised in Kancheepuram district of Tamil Nadu Friday.

The incident comes against the backdrop of a renewed debate on Periyar in Tamil Nadu after superstar Rajinikanth last week made critical remarks the Dravidian stalwart.


Political leaders from most parties in Tamil Nadu condemned the damage to the statue and demanded stern action against whoever did it.

The statue at Salavakkam was found damaged on Friday morning, causing a flutter in the locality. The state police warned of "strong action" against anti-social elements who damage statues.

The incident shows once again how quickly Tamil Nadu politics can be brought to the boil by adverse remars aginst icons warmly cherished by this or that section. As a vehement rationalist and critic of Hindu mythology, Periyar provided the basis for the Dravidian movement. Although the movement itself has splintered into several breakaway parties, each of them holds him as an icon who cannot be attacked.

Against that background, superstar Rajinikanth’s remarks on Periyar at an event held by Tamil magazine 'Thuglak' on January 14 amounted to a willful triggering of a controversy.

Rajinikanth alleged: “In 1971, at Salem Periyar took out a rally in which nude images of Lord Sriramachandramoorthy and Sita, with a garland of sandals, (were) paraded...."

His comments drew the ire of pro-Periyar outfits and political parties, including the ruling AIADMK and DMK. But the actor, who is expected to float his political party ahead of the Assembly elections next year, refused to apologise, insisting that what he said was based on facts.

Condemning the statue vandalisation, DMK president M K Stalin said damaging the statue of Periyar who had "strived for Tamils and Tamil Nadu for 95 years was shameful and regrettable."

The state government must take due action, he told reporters here.

Director-general of police L K Tripathy "has warned that the police will take very strong action against anti-social elements who vandalise statues of Thanthai Periyar or statues of other leaders in the state," a police source said.