The Maharashtra Police on Tuesday filed a first information report against Tamil Nadu minister Udhayanidhi Stalin after his remarks about Sanatana Dharma triggered a controversy, The Indian Express reported.
At a press conference in Chennai on September 2, the son of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin had said that Sanatana Dharma – a term some people use as a synonym for Hinduism – was akin to dengue and malaria and should be “eradicated”.
Based on a complaint by a resident of the Mira Road in Thane district, the police on Tuesday night filed a case against Udhayanidhi Stalin under Indian Penal Code Sections 295-A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) and 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc).
The action comes after the Uttar Pradesh Police on September 5 booked Stalin and Karnataka minister Priyank Kharge on charges of hurting religious sentiments.
On September 4, Kharge supported Stalin’s comments and said that any religion that does not promote equality is “as good as a disease”.
Bharatiya Janata Party’s social media cell head Amit Malviya claimed that Stalin’s statement was equivalent to “a call for genocide”. The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader has denied the claim.
Ayodhya’s Tapasvi Chhawani Temple’s seer Ramchandra Das Paramhans Acharya has announced a Rs 10 crore bounty on the head of Stalin, while Union minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat warned that anyone who speaks against Sanatana Dharma will have his tongue pulled out and his eyes gouged out.
The Tamil Nadu unit of the BJP has urged Director General of Police Shankar Jiwal to file a case against the youth welfare and sports minister, claiming that his comments have led to communal disharmony, The New Indian Express reported.
A delegation led by Karu Nagaraj, vice president of the state BJP, told him that police stations across Tamil Nadu have refused to file a case against Stalin despite several complaints.
Stalin, though, has maintained that he is ready to face any legal action for his comments.