Kamal Haasan, the President and founder of the Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM,) on the 13th of May, drew a lot of criticism from the opposition parties for his Godse remark, in Tamil Nadu.
K.T. Rajenthra Bhalaji, a member of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK,) addressed the media and said, “His (Kamal Haasan) tongue should be cut off..he has said (free India’s first extremist) was a Hindu. Extremism has no religion, neither Hindu nor Muslim nor Christian.”
Bhalaji took a dig at Haasan for his extremist remarks against Nathuram Godse, who assassinated Mahatma Gandhi. He said, Haasan is saying this to gain the votes of the Muslims and win the Assembly seats in Aravakurichi, Tamil Nadu.
The criticism from the AIADMK leader came after Haasan, during a public rally, said, “I am one of the proud Indians who want an India with equality where the three colours in the Tricolour flag should remain intact.” He further added, “I am not saying this here (Aravakkurichi) as Muslims are high in numbers. But, I am saying this before the statue of Mahatma Gandhiji. In fact, Independent India’s first terrorist was a Hindu whose name is Nathuram Ghodse. I have come here to get an answer for Gandhiji’s murder.”
On the 12th of May, Haasan addressed a public rally in Aravakurichi, Tamil Nadu.
The comments not only angered the AIADMK leaders but also the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP.)
Tamilisai Soundararajan, the Chief of the BJP in Tamil Nadu, said, the comments made by Haasan targeted the whole Hindu community, which is not right as he does not have any right to label the members of an entire community as terrorists.
Actor Kamalahasan recalling Gandhi’s assassination now and calling it Hindu terrorism is condemnable.Standing amidst minorities in TN by-election campaign he is lighting a dangerous fire to gain votes by minority appeasement.kamal didn’t opine on recent Srilanka bomb blast why?
— Chowkidar Dr Tamilisai Soundararajan (@DrTamilisaiBJP) May 13, 2019
Many other political leaders such as Mahant Narendra Giri, Giriraj Singh, Sanjay Raut and others took to Twitter and bashed Kamal Haasan for his remarks against Hindus.
Actor Vivek Oberoi also lashed out at Haasan for his statement.
Dear Kamal sir, you are a great artist. Just like art has no religion, terror has no religion either! You can say Ghodse was a terrorist, why would you specify ‘Hindu’ ? Is it because you were in a Muslim dominated area looking for votes? @ikamalhaasan https://t.co/Hu3zxJjYNb
— Vivek Anand Oberoi (@vivekoberoi) May 13, 2019
The opposition parties reported the issue to the Election Commission of Tamil Nadu and demanded strict action against Haasan and his Party. They also asked the EC to ban Haasan from contesting the elections on the 19th of May.
On the 19th of May, the State will contest 4 Assembly seats, which includes Sulur, Aravakurichi, Ottapidaram and Thirupprankundram.
The elections were initially scheduled on the 18th of April, along with the Lok Sabha elections. However, as the voters in Vellore were being heavily bribed, the ECI cancelled the elections at the time and postponed to the 19th of May 2019.
The major parties contesting the remaining 4 Assembly seats are the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK,) the AIADMK and the MNM.
The results of the Assembly elections will be announced on the 23rd of May.