Tamil Nadu  Minister Sekar Babu defends participation in Sanatan meet; says it was for annihilation of caste

Tamil Nadu Minister P K Sekar Babu on Tuesday submitted in the Madras High Court that petitions filed against him vis-a-vis the Sanatan Dharma meet was out of political vendetta and prayed that the pleas be dismissed.

The Minister said his participation in the September 2 meet here was in support of eradication of caste system and untouchability. It was to promote equality and nurture harmony in society.

Sekar Babu, Minister for Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department, contended that the writ petitions are not maintainable and devoid of merits and should hence be dismissed with exemplary costs.

These writ petitions for issuance of writ of quo warranto –challenging the authority under which a public office was held by a person– to remove a minister is not maintainable.

The Madras HC and the Supreme Court have held that an elected member of Parliament or the legislative Assembly cannot be recalled and there is no provision in the Constitution to recall an elected member.

Citing judgments, the respondent Minister said a writ of quo warranto cannot be issued against a Minister.

The writ petitions have been filed with a motive to create ill feelings among different caste and religious groups and thereby polarise votes in their favour.

The petitioner claims to be an office bearer of Hindu Munnani, which is an outfit acting in support of Bharatiya Janata Party.

“Therefore, the intention of the writ petitioners is only to take political advantage of the situation by creating a hype.”

As regards the conference, the respondent submitted that the organisers of the meet felt that the principles followed in ‘Sanatana’ are against maintaining equality among human beings.

Anything that is against equality and encourages caste system and untouchability are considered bad for the society.

“The speakers in the meeting expressed similar feelings and made a call to the society to be kind and considerate to the fellow human beings and treat them as equal by shedding untouchability.” The Dravidian movement always propagated eradication of the caste system in the society. The DMK party was also founded with the same objective.

“The leaders of the party (DMK) past and present have been called for eradicating the caste system which is doing harm to the society.” It is also identified to be the root cause of many crimes in the society.

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The concept of ‘Sanatana’ is interpreted in a different fashion in different parts of the country, Sekar Babu, who also took part in the meet alongwith Minister Udhayanidhi Stalin, said.

In a memo, senior counsel representing Udhayanidhi Stalin, said that when an amendment of writ petition is sought by the petitioner, such an application has to be decided first by allowing respondents an opportunity to file their counter petitions.

Also, it was prayed that further opportunity be given to the respondents to continue arguments in the main writ petitions. The writ petitioners filed two applications. One was to amend the second respondent as the ‘Secretary, Tamil Nadu Assembly.’ Another was to direct a Tamil news television channel to produce the video recording of the Sanatan Dharma eradication conference.

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