news Wednesday, January 21, 2015 - 05:30
The News Minute | January 14, 2015 | 12.31 pm IST An online petition has been started, asking people to support Tamil author Perumal Murugan’s right to write, his Freedom of Expression.  Murugan’s book Mathorubagan, about the “traditional free, consensual sex rituals” practiced in a town named Tiruchengode. When word about the book spread, Hindu groups and casteist groups burned copies of the book and launched a campaign against him, denigrating him and the book. They even threatened him. He even offered to remove the offensive parts of the book and went and met leaders of those groups during a peace meeting in Namakkal. Read: 'Author Perumal Murugan has died' , hounded by Hindutva groups author puts up poignant post Addressed to the Tamil Nadu government, the online petition was set up on January 13 and has been shared several times.  This is the full text of the petition: "The Hindu religious fundamentalist groups and caste based groups have burned copies of Madhorubagan, a Tamil Novel by Prof Perumal Murugan and threatened the right to free speech of the author. Tamil Nadu police silently withdrew protection for the writer and the writer is forced to abandon writing. The novel weaves the story based on oral history of “traditional free, consensual sex rituals” held once in a year during the car festival of the Ardhanareeswara, the presiding deity of Tiruchengodu temple in the past. BJP, RSS and other Hindu fundamentalist and casteist organisations have demanded banning the novel, Madhorubagan, citing that it has portrayed the Kailasanathar temple in Tiruchengode and women devotees in bad light. The Hindu fundamentalists have once again taken the baton “Cultural Policing” based on their brahminical, casteist, and hierarchical notions. We urge the progressive forces to unite and strongly condemn the violence perpetuated by religious fundamentalist and other casteist forces, and stand for the right to free speech of Prof. Perumal Murugan." A report in The Hindu points out the silence of the two large Dravidian parties. The silence of the DMK is more startling on account of the fact that its chief M Karunanidhi is himself a writer and rather erudite. The AIADMK government has been largely silent on many issues, post the conviction of J Jayalalithaa.  Leader of the Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi D Ravikumar told The Hindu that the silence of the DMK and AIADMK was not surprising as the two parties would speak out when religion was involved, but in the instant case, caste was also mixed up with religion. Tweet Follow @thenewsminute
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