Rajnath Singh reportedly cancels visit to university amid row over Vairamuthu getting honorary degree

FP Staff

Dec 27, 2019 11:14:31 IST

A controversy erupted on Thursday over a private university's decision to confer an honorary doctorate on noted Tamil poet, novelist and lyricist Vairamuthu at a convocation ceremony on Saturday which is scheduled to be attended by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.

Two Hindu outfits opposed the move and announced black flag protests outside the University at suburban Kattankulathur.

Indu Makkal Katchi and the Hindu Munnadi announced the protest, with the latter saying it will stage the demo against Singh also.

The Hindu Munnani alleged Vairamuthu earlier made some controversial remarks about female Vaishnavite saint Andal, following which protests had erupted against the national award-winning lyricist.

Police complaints were also filed against him, it said.

Indu Makkal Katchi said its founder Arjun Sampath "condemns" the event, "and announces black flag protest in front of the venue on the day".

He alleged Vairamuthu had to face sexual harassment charges in the past. Vairamuthu had denied the allegations against him.

He had also denied making objectionable remarks against Andal, even as he had expressed regret.

In October last year, multiple women accused the lyricist of inappropriate behaviour. Twitterati also reacted to the news adding that Singh had reportedly refused to attend the ceremony owing to the negative sentiments that the stance may garner in Tamil Nadu. Singer Chinmayi Sripaada, who has vocally condemned Vairamuthu's behaviour in the past, posted on social media that Singh was supposed to head a committee, set up by the present government, which would look into sexual harassment complaints.

Some even claim that the lyricist may not even receive the honour and that the university is planning on bringing in new guests for the convocation ceremony.

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(With inputs from Press Trust of India)

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Updated Date: Dec 27, 2019 11:35:34 IST