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Wrestlers’ fight for justice in Delhi rekindles a similar battle in Tamil Nadu

Lakshmana Venkat Kuchi If anything that has lowered the image of the country in the eyes of the world it is surely the images of women Olympic champion wrestlers being kicked and dragged around by police personnel beamed live from New Delhi. Among those expressing shock over this ghastly treatment being meted out to the […]

Edited By : Lakshmana | Updated: May 31, 2023 15:35 IST
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MK Stalin

Lakshmana Venkat Kuchi

If anything that has lowered the image of the country in the eyes of the world it is surely the images of women Olympic champion wrestlers being kicked and dragged around by police personnel beamed live from New Delhi. Among those expressing shock over this ghastly treatment being meted out to the national icons is Tamil Nadu chief minister MK Stalin, who condemned the police action, took the central government to task for its failure to take action against the alleged accused.

Months have passed since the women wrestlers raised allegations against the BJP MP, but that party leadership has not acted against their MP, Stalin said in a hard-hitting statement.

His stand on women wrestlers has been welcomed by many, including noted playback singer Chinmayi, who sings in almost all the South Indian languages and Hindi as well, who herself had levelled serious charges against a very powerful Tamil film personality who is also politically very well connected.

Welcoming Chief Minister Stalin’s outrage against the central government’s inaction over women wrestlers’ complaints of sexual harassment at the hands of a powerful BJP politician, singer Chinmayi Sripaada urged him to take action against lyricist Vairamuthu, who was also named by several women during the MeToo movement.

Now, the singer in a tweet, tagging Chief Minister Stalin, claimed that DMK members and people close to Stalin had tried to silence her when she took up the issue and urged the Chief Minister to make all the “working spaces in Tamil Nadu safe for women.”

She said that it was amazing that the CM showed support for the cause of justice for sexual harassment survivors, but lamented that still there were no systems in place yet – no ICC or POSCO in many industries especially in the film industry to which she belongs.

“17+ women have named your friend/supporter Mr Vairamuthu who continues to enjoy your proximity which he uses to silence women who speak up even more. Your party continues to platform him, as have other politicians in Tamilnadu,’ Chinmayi Sripada said putting the chief minister in a difficult spot.

Incidentally, this issue has been raised by BJP leaders as well.

TN BJP Chief, K Annamalai question the Chief Minister whether lyricist Vairamuthu, accused of sexual harassment by several women five years ago, has yet been booked. The moment Stalin came out with his support for the women wrestlers, the BJP chief hit out against the CM.

Has an FIR been filed or has he even been questioned, Annamalai questioned the Chief Minister.

Incidentally, Chinmayi Sripaada had filed a complaint with the NCW way back in 2018-2019 and claimed that she had enough circumstantial evidence including phone call records where Vairamuthu arranged a call to arrive at a ‘compromise’. She said that his son Madhan Karky was also informed via text to which he called, responded and agreed he and his family were already aware of his father’s behaviour several years ago.

“The rules cannot be different for Vairamuthu and Brij Bhushan,” she said and added, “Our Champion wrestlers and the Country’s pride including a Minor have named Brij Bhushan. 17+ women have named Vairamuthu who has used the proximity to your party and You, to silence me, and others and ruin the careers of women who are talented and had dreams. His talent is not greater than all of us.”

First published on: May 31, 2023 03:35 PM IST

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