The legal battles surrounding the management of the South Indian Artistes' Association, popularly known as Nadigar Sangam intensified on Friday, after incumbent General Secretary Vishal approached the Madras High Court for the removal of a government-appointed special officer to oversee the organisation's functioning. His counsel further alleged that the appointment was illegal.
The Tamil Nadu government on Thursday appointed PV Geetha, Assistant Inspector General of Registration, as Special Officer to manage the affairs of Nadigar Sangam. Geetha will hold office for a period of one year beginning November 6, 2019, or until disputes pertaining to Nadigar Sangam elections pending with the Madras High Court are resolved. The move was made after one faction of the association alleged that day to day affairs were being interrupted due to the lack of elected office bearers.
However, arguing in court, Vishal's counsel pointed out that when an organisation has 3000 members it is illegal to appoint an officer based on the complaint of just three members. He further asked that the appointment of the special officer be cancelled.
On Thursday, incumbent President Nasser, Treasurer (incumbent) Karthi, Poochi Murugan, actors Manobala, Sachu and few others met the press to address the issue.
"We have nothing to hide and have been running a transparent office. We will therefore co-operate with the Special Officer. It is our responsibility to do so. They don't have anything on us, we have no faults. This is democracy being choked," said Nasser.
Explaining that a few members had filed a complaint against the previous office bearers for non-disbursal of pension, actor Karthi said that the pension scheme is part of the Nadigar Sangam trust and has no relationship with the association.
"The case in the court is with regards to an issue regarding the trust. Whereas a special officer has now been appointed to oversee the functioning of the association. The two are completely unrelated. We believe justice will be on our side in the end," he added.
Those present for the press meet also alleged that the government was being pressured to look into the Sangam's affairs by members with political connections, taking a clear dig at opposing team member Ishari Ganesh.
The Registrar of Societies had temporarily called off the Nadigar Sangam polls just days before it was set to happen, based on a complaint from 61 members that they were removed from the voters' list by the contesting Pandavar Ani to skew the election results in their favour. However, the polls did take place on June 23 after the members went to court but the results have been withheld.