Tamil Nadu Police had a tough job on Saturday conducting inspections and booking several members of the Hindu Munnani for violating a state government order against public celebrations of Vinayagar Chathurthi festival.
According to reports, violations of the government order were reported from Tenkasi, Dindigul and Coimbatore districts where the members of the outfit either tried to install statues of the deity in public places or tried to dress up as the deity himself and take out processions. In Tenkasi district, a Hindu Munnani member was arrested by the Sengottai police for trying to install a Vinayagar statue in a public place.
Speaking to TNM, a police officer attached to the Sengottai station said that the violation was noticed on Saturday morning when the police were patrolling the area. “We went for inspection across the town in the morning and came to know about this. We immediately seized the statue and are awaiting orders for further action on the statue. Meanwhile, we have booked one Hindu Munnani party functionary and arrested him,” he said.
Similarly, in Kudaipparaipatti village in Dindigul district, the Hindu Munnani workers installed a Vinayagar statue in the village, prompting the police to reprimand them. The village is reportedly known for celebrating Vinayagar Chathurthi in a grand manner and on Saturday, the police reached the village and engaged in talks with those who had installed the statue. “The talks are still going on, they have installed a statue against the orders of the government,” a police officer said.
In Coimbatore city, violations related to public celebrations of the festival were recorded in seven spots. “We have seized the statues and registered seven FIRs against Hindu Munnani members,” Coimbatore city police Commissioner Sumit Sharan told TNM.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswamy, on Thursday, had announced that the installation of Ganesha idols in public places and taking them on a procession to water bodies is prohibited due to COVID-19 and had requested the people of Tamil Nadu to celebrate the festival in their own houses. Meanwhile, the Madras High Court had recently allowed individuals to install Ganesha idols in their houses and immerse them in the water bodies except in Marina, in Chennai.