A woman named Maniamma has been booked for using a casteist slur against Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. A video of her using the derogatory term and abusing the chief minister during a protest march against the Supreme Court’s ruling in the Sabarimala temple women’s entry case has reportedly been shared widely on social media, drawing condemnation and discussion both online and offline.
Maniamma, of Cherukole district in Pathanamthitta, has been booked by Aranmula police in Pathanamthitta under IPC sec 294(b) (using/singing obscene language/song in public), 153 (provocation with intent to cause riot), and 506(1) (criminal intimidation). Pramod, police public relations officer, told TNM, “She is between 60 to 65 years. Maniamma, wife of Sivan Pilla, is currently absconding.”
Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalan Yogam (SNDP) office bearer V Sunil Kumar had filed a complaint based on the video, which was brought to the attention of the Aranmula police. The SNDP is the first caste-based association in Kerala, and is a leading organisation of the Ezhava community. The dominant Ezhava community has been classified as an Other Backward Caste (OBC).
SNDP General Secretary Vellapally Natesan told TNM, “I am not aware of all the details, as I have not seen the video in question. But I did see the news reports about a very shameful casteist abuse being used against the chief minister, and I am aware the case has been filed. Such an incident would have happened because caste-based discrimination is very much alive in Kerala, and there is still anger that Kerala is headed by an Ezhava.”