Ponnar slams Stalin for 'insulting' honour

Nagercoil: Union Minister Pon Radhakrishnan charged DMK leader M K Stalin with insulting and committing sacrilege by allegedly wiping off the "Manjal Kappu" (turmeric paste) offered by priests during his visit to a temple in Tiruchirapalli district.

"I don't know if it is proper for Stalin to wipe off the Manjal Kappu after allowing the temple priests to smear it on his forehead," he told reporters here.

"If Stalin is an atheist as he claims, why should he accept the honour? Who gave Stalin permission to commit an act of profanity and insult God?" the BJP leader asked.

Stalin, an avowed rationalist, made a stopover at the ancient Sri Ranganathaswamy temple on Friday last and accepted the traditional Poornakhumba' honour by priests.

The DMK working president, on his way to attend a family function of a party functionary at Srirangam, had stopped in front of "Ranga Ranga" tower on the south side of the temple.

The priests recited hymns with 'poornakhumbam' on their hands and offered him 'manjal kappu' (turmeric paste) prasad of goddess Ranganayaki, which he accepted.

Poornakhumbam is considered a honour in Hindu ethos since special prayers are made seeking divine blessings for the recipient.

The DMK leader, though, did not enter the temple. Priests and other temple staffers were given dhotis and some cash on his behalf as a mark of respect.

Early this year, Stalin had also said that DMK, which has traditionally claimed itself to be an outfit following atheistic principles, did not believe in criticising private religious beliefs of people, whether it was Hinduism or any other faith.


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