Actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan on Wednesday hit out at the Central government over the vandalizing of the Periyar statue in Vellore.
Addressing a press conference, he said, “There is no need to deploy police to protect the Periyar statue in Coimbatore. We Tamilians will protect it,” he said, alleging that this issue had been raised to divert attention from the formation of the Cauvery management board.
There is no need to deploy police for protection of #PeriyarStatue. We Tamilians will protect it.I feel that this issue is just to divert attention from Cauvery issue (formation of Cauvery management board): Kamal Hassan pic.twitter.com/88aZ7gHqcL
— ANI (@ANI) March 7, 2018
He also hit out at BJP leader H Raja, whose controversial Facebook post, encouraging people to vandalise Periyar statues soon after a statue of Lenin was damaged in Tripura raised criticism.
“H Raja has expressed regret. This is not enough. He has to apologise, as he has come out with a lame excuse which cannot be accepted. Taking action against him would be the right course of action. However, I am doubtful whether the BJP would do it,” the actor added.
Senior BJP leader H Raja on Tuesday had posted the message on social networking site Facebook after alleged BJP supporters used a earth-mover to bring down a statue of communist revolutionary Lenin in Tripura, two days after the party won the assembly elections in the state. “Who is Lenin? What is the relevance he holds in India? What is the link between communism and India? Lenin’s statues were destroyed in Tripura, tomorrow, in Tamil Nadu, casteist Periyar’s statues will be destroyed,” he wrote.
On Wednesday Raja expressed regrets over his social media post on which denigrated social reformer Periyar E V Ramasamy. In a new message on his Facebook page on Wednesday, Raja blamed his associates for uploading the post denigrating Periyar without his knowledge.
“Views can be debated only by countering it and not through violence. I don’t want to hurt anyone. Therefore, if anyone has been hurt due to the post, I really regret the action,” wrote Raja.
EV Ramasamy Periyar is considered as the pioneer of Dravidian Nationalism. Historically, Periyar demanded a separate Dravidian nation, as late as 1962 C N Annadurai made a pitch for separation in the Rajya Sabha, and Dravidian politics has revolved around a fierce sense of Tamil pride. Hindutva as an ideology is seen as alien to the land and an import from Aryan culture.