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Kerala society intolerant to criticism, says Azhikode

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Frankly speaking: Social critic Prof. Sukumar Azhikode inaugurating a meeting on the second death anniversary of the rationalist and writer Pavanan at the Kerala Sahitya Akademi in Thrissur on Sunday.
Frankly speaking: Social critic Prof. Sukumar Azhikode inaugurating a meeting on the second death anniversary of the rationalist and writer Pavanan at the Kerala Sahitya Akademi in Thrissur on Sunday.

Staff Reporter

The occasion was writer Pavanan’s death anniversary

THRISSUR: Writer and social critic Prof. Sukumar Azhikode has said that the Kerala society is becoming increasingly intolerant to criticism.

Referring to threat calls and a decision by certain Hindutva organisations to take out a march to his house against his criticism of Amritanandamayi, Prof. Azhikode recalled that he had received threat calls for criticising the demolition of Babri Masjid.

He was speaking after inaugurating a meeting on the second death anniversary of writer and rationalist Pavanan at the Kerala Sahitya Akademi here on Sunday.

He said Amritanandamayi was just a label. “Behind her there was a system, which stage-managed the show. We need to expose this system,” he said.

Referring to a move to conduct a protest rally to his home, Prof. Azhikode said, “All are welcome. If possible I will provide you with some good books to read.”

He said that nobody could silence him. Prof. Azhikode said Pavanan was a genuine person, who approached life rationally and logically.

He had transformed the Kerala Sahitya Akademi into a collective of writers.

Speaking on ‘Faith trade and secularism’, writer Vaisakhan said all religions thrived on post-life spirituality. “They talk about death, sin, hell and heaven,” he said. “They try to build their kingdom based on the fear of the masses. People were now installing the statue of Sri Narayana Guru, a person who had fought against idol worship. Even the government cannot act against a fraud if it becomes an institution.”

Mr. Vaisakhan called for redefining spirituality to support democracy and secularism. Kerala’s educated society was illiterate in the case of spirituality, he said. He also crticised the church for its recent call to increase Christian population. Parvathy, Pavanan’s wife also spoke.

Pavanan Foundation

Revenue Minister K.P. Rajendran inaugurated another programme on the occasion at the Kerala Sahitya Akademi organised by Pavanan Foundation India. Speaking at the meeting writer C. Radhakrishnan recalled Mr.Pavanan’s dedication towards his work and ideology. Scientist R.V.G. Menon delivered a lecture on ‘Values of Science and Science of Values’. A discussion on ‘Rationalism in Kerala and Pavanan’ was organised by Mundassery Memorial Committee.

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