Tamil Nadu honours Tamil scholar

March 19th, 2008 - 9:59 pm ICT by admin  

(Re-issuing with corrections)

Cuddalore (Tamil Nadu), March 19 (IANS) The Tamil Nadu government Wednesday honoured a scholar reciting Tamil hymns in the precincts of the famous Chidambaram Nataraja temple, with a life-long monthly pension of Rs.3,000. Scholar Arumugasamy received the first cheque of his pension from District Collector Rajendra Ratnoo at a function in this small seaside town, 200 km south of capital Chennai.

“Tamils were denied the right to pray in temples in their mother-tongue since the medieval period. Chief Minister (M.) Karunanidhi who has helped us achieve this by humbling the Dikshitars of Chidambaram, in my opinion, is god incarnate,” Arumugasamy said after receiving the cheque.

State Hindu Religious and Central Endowments (HR&CE) Minister K.R. Periyakaruppan Monday announced that the government would try to get vacated the stay on the appointment of an executive officer for the temple. The Dikshitars, a small Brahmin community who control the Chidambaram temple, had secured the stay.

The government moves are seen by some in the state as efforts to take over the famous Chidambaram Nataraja temple.

Hindu activists in the neighbouring district of Tiruvarur have opposed the decision of the HR&CE department to hold the temple car festival before the appropriate date.

Workers of the Hindu Front and Bharatiya Janata Party tried to organise a parallel event Tuesday in Tiruvarur. It, however, could not make much headway as the police slapped on the town orders prohibiting assembly of four or more people at a time. The police also detained a baby elephant that was to be used in the festival.

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