Amid Udhayanidhi Stalin's 'Sanatana Dharma' remarks row, father's podcast targets BJP

By | Edited by Aniruddha Dhar
Sep 04, 2023 01:02 PM IST

Amid row over Udhayanidhi Stalin's remarks on Sanatana Dharma, Tamil Nadu CM Stalin launched a podcast series slamming the Modi government.

While the row over Udhayanidhi Stalin's remarks on ‘Sanatana Dharma’ snowballed into a massive political slugfest, his father and Tamil Nadu chief minister MK Stalin on Monday launched a podcast ‘Speaking for India’ series – a bid to support the Opposition's INDIA or Indian National Democratic Inclusive Alliance.

Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin and his son Udhayanidhi Stalin.(FB/Udhayanidhi Stalin)
Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin and his son Udhayanidhi Stalin.(FB/Udhayanidhi Stalin)

In the first episode, Stalin reiterated the INDIA bloc's stand that the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government was “destroying” the country under Prime Minister Narendra Modi's leadership.

"We are living in times where each and every one of us has to speak up for India. The Bharatiya Janata Party is trying to damage the basic structure of India and destroy the sense of unity that Indians have cherished and protected for so long," CM Stalin said.

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He alleged the central government failed to fulfil its pre-election promises and deliver welfare schemes in its decade-long rule. "There were many other yarns that were spun that just remained tall tales," he said.

Stalin also said Modi lied about the ‘Gujarat Model’ and would leave the country's highest office with "no significant model to call his own". It has become a rudderless model, and there are no tall claims about the once-famous Gujarat model either, especially after we listed the achievements of the Dravidian Model in Tamil Nadu with statistical proof," he added.

'Gujarat model', frequently endorsed by Modi and his party, refers to the “development-oriented governance” carried out in the state during Modi's tenure as its CM.

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He further alleged the government is “misusing its power to transfer the public sector to their corporate friends." "The welfare of the entire country has been reduced to the welfare of a few. Government-owned Air India has now been privatised," the CM said.

‘…religion as weapon to hide shortcomings’

"Airports and ports all over India are going into the hands of private organisations. While Prime Minister Modi’s promise to double the income of farmers is far from fulfilled, the living standards of the poor and downtrodden haven't become better either. They have taken religion as their weapon to hide all their shortcomings," he added.

Stalin also took a potshot at other policies of the Modi government, including handling of the Manipur ethnic violence and Haryana's Nuh clashes, and alleged scams and bias against non-BJP ruled states and said it had "threatened" India's federalism.

He further advocated for the INDIA bloc and said, “It is this INDIA alliance that is going to save India. If we want to prevent the whole of India from becoming Manipur and Haryana, which, unfortunately, fell victim to BJP's communal politics, and hate-inciting policies, the INDIA alliance must win…”

The podcast was released amid controversy over his son and state minister Udhayanidhi Stalin's remarks intensified. Udhayanidhi on Saturday had called to “eradicate” Sanatana Dharma – a set of religious duties practised in Hinduism and had equated it to “dengue and malaria”.

He later clarified that he had not called for any "genocide" as alleged by the BJP but insisted on “uprooting” Sanatana Dharma, which he said “divides people in the name of caste and religion.”

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    Trainee Content Producer at HT Digital. I read about feminism, late modern history, and globalisation of Korean music.

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