DMK seeks PM’s intervention in IIT Madras controversy

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File photo
File photo

The Dravida Munnettra Kazhagam (DMK) on 31 May sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “direct intervention” in revoking the order to ensure that “peace” returned in the institute.

The party also criticised IIT Madras for its decision to derecognise a students’ body for alleged violation of code of conduct.

Based on an “anonymous” letter, the HRD Ministry had “sidestepped natural justice” of seeking explanation and banned the group that amounts to “stifling” freedom of expression, party chief M Karunanidhi said.

Unilateral interference by Modi’s ministers on such trivial issues will impact both the youth and the nation’s peace, Karunanidhi said, without naming HRD Minister Smriti Irani.

“Though the PM doesn’t place importance on issues such as banning a democratic group, his ministers interfere in an authoritarian manner in such issues. This will not only stop youth’s thought process, but also affect the nation’s peace,” he said.

Meanwhile, a notice has been issued to IIT Madras over de-recognition of a students’ group by the National Commission for Scheduled Castes. Reason: Several of the body’s members are Dalits.

The educational institution de-recognised the body as it was allegedly critical of PM Narendra Modi. Confirming the move on 31 May, National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) chairperson PL Punia said they have sought a reply from the institute. “Youngsters must have freedom of speech on campuses.

Extending bans like this suppress their voices. This is completely wrong. I have issued a notice to the institute and sought its reply after taking note of the incident myself. We will take action in this regard, Punia said.

He further accused the Central government of being “insensitive” towards the marginalised sections and claimed that the number of anti-Dalit incidents had increased ever since the Modi government had come to power. “Such incidents have increased. These are not minor incidents, but serious ones,” said Punia, who is a Congress Rajya Sabha MP.

Referring to a clash earlier this month in Nagaur district in Rajasthan in which four persons were killed and seven others injured, Punia claimed the local administration had not taken the issue seriously until he visited the spot.

“The district magistrate had not visited the spot. When I visited the spot three days after the incident, only then did the district collector accompany me. This shows that the people in the government don’t take such incidents seriously,” he said.

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