Udhayanidhi Stalin, DMK, MK Stalin, The Federal, English news website
TN minister Udhayanidhi Stalin said he was the grandson of the man who was ready to sacrifice his life for Tamil Nadu and was “not worried about these threats” | File photo

‘10-rupee comb enough’: Udhayanidhi’s response to Rs 10-cr bounty on head

Ayodhya seer Paramhans Acharya has allegedly announced a reward of Rs 10 crore to anyone who would behead the TN minister over his Sanatan Dharma comments

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Tamil Nadu’s Minister for Youth Welfare and Sports Development, Udhayanidhi Stalin, made light of the news of a Rs 10-crore bounty on his head being announced by an Ayodhya seer. He said a 10-rupee comb was enough to brush his hair.

He was responding to PTI’s report about Ayodhya seer Paramhans Acharya on Monday (September 4) announcing a reward of Rs 10 crore to anyone who would behead the TN chief minister’s son over his alleged comments against Sanatan Dharma.

“I will pay Rs 10-crore cash reward to anyone who beheads Stalin and brings his head to me. If no one dares to kill Stalin, I will myself find him and kill him,” Paramhans Acharya, the chief priest of the Tapaswi Chawni temple of Ayodhya, said.

The seer has in the past made similar announcements over Shah Rukh Khan displaying saffron attire in his Hindi movie Pathaan and Samajwadi Party leader Swami Prasad Maurya for his comments on Ramcharitmanas.

Not worried about threats: Udhayanidhi

Speaking at an event in Chennai, Udhayanidhi said he was the grandson of the man (M Karunanidhi) who was ready to sacrifice his life for Tamil Nadu and was “not worried about these threats”.

“A 10-rupee comb is enough to comb my hair," he said, dismissing the threat. In Tamil, the word for chop or slice also means combing hair.

"This is not new to us. We are not the ones who are afraid of all these threats. I am the grandson of the artist who put his head on the rail track for Tamil," said the young minister, referring to his grandfather, who was the chief minister of Tamil Nadu five times.

Udhayanidhi was making a reference to the specific incident in 1953 that began the ascendancy of Karunanidhi in Tamil Nadu politics, when he and other DMK workers lay down on the railway tracks to protest against the renaming of a village after the Dalmias, a business family that was setting up a cement factory there.

Stirring the hornet’s nest

Udhayanidhi stirred a hornet’s nest on Saturday (September 2) when, speaking at a conference, he said that Sanatana Dharma was against equality and social justice, and that it should be eradicated. He said it was like coronavirus, malaria, and dengue fever, and that such things should not be opposed but destroyed.

The BJP reacted strongly to his remarks, and said that it was equal to “a call for genocide”.

Udhayanidhi responded to the BJP statement calling it “fake news”.

He said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi talks about Congress-mukt Bharat. Does it mean murder of Congress members?”

"We talk about a principle. What's Sanatan Dharma first of all? It is explained as eternal, permanent and unchanging. Our Dravidian model is about change in everything… Some years ago, they said women should not study. Many years ago, it was said women should not cover their upper body and that they shouldn't enter temples. We have changed everything. This is the Dravidian model," added Udhayanidhi Stalin.

The DMK, founded on the rationalist principles of EVR Periyar, has for several decades opposed Sanatan Dharma and has benefited politically.

The Dravidian politicians argue that large segments of the population had been oppressed by those who practised the casteist elements of Sanatan Dharma, by the denial of equality, education, entry into places of worship, and cruelty against women.

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