Chennai: Tension gripped at Pillayarpatti in Thanjavur district today, after miscreants smeared mud on a statue of saint poet Thiruvalluvar.
The statue located near a building owned by Pillayarpatti Panchayat was found blackened with mud and a black paper pasted covering the eyes.
Passersby who noticed this informed the Tamil University police who rushed to the spot, cleaned the statue and garlanded it.
Police protection has been provided. Sources said a case has been registered, and investigation is being carried out.
Several political leaders and Tamil activists have condemned the act. Following the incident, agitation was held by Thanjavur, Thiruvaiyaru MLAs and a few outfits seeking in-depth probe in this case.
Students of Tamil University boycotted the classes and demanded the arrest of the miscreants.
The event has took place at a time when there is a heated political controversy about the poet’s religion.
Debates were triggered yesterday after BJP’s Tamilnadu twitter handle tweeted a photo Thiruvalluvar with a saffron dress and Viboothi, indicating the the Tamil poet was a Hindu. However, this was immediately opposed by many people, following which the hash tag #BJPInsultsThiruvalluvar was trending in social media.
Reacting to BJP’s twitter post, DMK president M K Stalin termed it as a Tamil betrayal.
The BJP in the tweet quoted a couplet of Thiruvalluvar and and asked what would be the benefit of education learnt by them if they insult God and criticise the believers of God.
It also urged the Dravidar Kazhagam, DMK and the two Left parties to realise it. Strongly reacting to it, Stalin said the BJP was trying to saffronise the poet for the growth of the party in Tamilnadu. ”Whatever type of colour is dyed, your colours will be exposed”, Stalin tweeted.
”Instead of saffronising, read Thirukkural and try to reform,” he added. It may be noted that Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently launched the Thai translation of Thirukkural in Bangkok.
BJP national secretary H Raja said, ‘Original Thiruvalluvar had vibhuti and all Hindu symbols. Dravidian parties changed his appearance conveniently to make him fit for their political gains. One of his verses ”Differences in jobs is not there in the birth’ was exactly the same what Krishna quoted in Bhagavad Gita too. Thiruvalluvar’s ideology was one that goes with Sanatana Dharma.”