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Tamil Poet Vairamuthu Apologises For Comments On Andal, TM Krishna Terms The Controversy ‘Sexist And Casteist’

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Noted Tamil poet Vairamuthu, in his speech last week, had said that 7th Century saint poet Andal was part of the Devadasi community who lived and died at the Srirangam temple in Tiruchirappalli. He had quoted from the book Indian Movements: Some Aspects of Dissent Protest and Reform. His comments, however, sparked a controversy with members of the BJP, AIADMK launching an attack on the poet. Soon enough #ArrestVairamuthu started trending on Twitter. Even a petition was started on change.org to condemn the poet.

Vairamuthu later issued an apology stating that it was not his opinion but that of an independent researcher. According to The Hindu, he said in a statement, “The objective of literature is to elevate the status of literary figures and not to demean them. All know that my entire article speaks of the greatness of Andal. My intention is not to hurt anyone…[But] if I had hurt, I feel sorry.”

Carnatic musician TM Krishna, who had received a lot of flak for his comments on MS Subbulakshmi recently, called the entire controversy around Andal “sexist and casteist.”

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