Chennai: While the BJP and its affiliated outfits stepped up their attack on Tamil Nadu Sports Minister Udhayanidhi Stalin for his call to eradicate Sanatan Dharma with an Uttar Pradesh-based sant announcing a Rs 10 crore reward for his head, the latter on Monday remained firm in his position.
Udhayanidhi said he would speak against Sanatan Dharma again and again if there attempts to intimidate him to stop speaking.
The DMK politician, who is the son of Chief Minister M K Stalin, told journalists in Thoothukudi, that there was no need for him to resign from the Cabinet as he had not said anything wrong about Sanatan Dharma. “Since Sanatan Dharma advocated the evil practice of sati and treated women like slaves, the Dravidian movement opposed it and liberated women from these nauseating practices and superstitious beliefs,” he contended.
The minister made it clear that he had not spoken anything against Hinduism and Hindus. “I condemn the evil practices and inequality encouraged by Sanatan Dharma. If these evil forces threaten me that I should not speak against it, I will speak against Sanatan Dharma again and again,” he said.
Udhayanidhi argued that the ‘Dravidian Model’ governance in Tamil Nadu has worked for emancipation of women through a range of schemes including education of girls.
Earlier in the day, launching the first episode of his ‘Speaking for India’ podcast series, DMK president and Chief Minister Stalin accused the BJP of using religion as a weapon to hide its shortcomings in governance.
“In 2002, the BJP sowed the seeds of violence and hatred in the state of Gujarat. In 2023, this sectarian fire has been ignited in the Manipur and saw the State burn. In Haryana, the fire of religious fanaticism is taking away the lives and properties of innocent people. If we do not put an end to this now, no one can save India and Indians,” Stalin charged.