National anthem curtailed at AIADMK supremo Jayalalithaa's swearing-in ceremony

  • HT Correspondents, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: May 23, 2015 23:10 IST

Comeback queen J Jayalalithaa's swearing-in ceremony ran into controversy on Saturday as the Tamil Nadu administration played a truncated version of the national anthem.

The AIADMK chief made a triumphant return as the chief minister for the fifth time on Saturday when she was

sworn in along with 28 ministers

during a simple ceremony in the Madras University Centenary Auditorium.

Just before Jayalalithaa rose to take the oath, the Tamil Nadu administration played the state anthem in full but played the curtailed version of the national anthem, which is about 20 seconds long.

The national anthem does have a shorter 20-second version but playing this at the swearing-in ceremony appears to be a violation of the Union home ministry’s orders.

The home ministry lists nine categories of occasions when the full 52-second version of the national anthem must be played.

One of the categories – which would apply to Saturday’s swearing-in ceremony – is: “On arrival of the governor/lieutenant governor at formal state functions within his state/union territory and on his departure from such functions.”

The rules only allow the shorter version to be played when raising toasts in messes.

The 28 ministers were not called one by one during the oath-taking ceremony. Instead, they were sworn in in two batches and read out the oath in a chorus. But there is no rule against such collective oath-taking.

The issue of the truncated national anthem was raised on Twitter.

One user with the handle @_as25901 posted on the micro-blogging site, "Seems like, the only reason the National Anthem was sung before Jayalalithaa was coz of. Jaya....Jaya..Jaya..Jaya....Hey..."

Another with the handle @whyarif tweeted, "National Anthem is only respected by common man. Jaya insults National Anthem."

Watch: National anthem curtailed at Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa's swearing-in ceremony

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