CHENNAI: Religion is being used as a tool to obstruct projects that have the potential to eliminate poverty and augment economic progress, Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi said here on Monday.
Addressing Tamil Nadu Dr. Ambedkar Law University’s convocation here, he said blind beliefs spread in the name of caste and religion should be erased from society. Law graduates should arm themselves with legal acumen and knowledge to counter arguments against the policy of reservation.
Tracing the history of reservation and the pioneering role of Tamil Nadu in evolving the policy, Mr. Karunanidhi said the creamy layer concept caused impediments to it. The DMK Government had reserved 30 per cent of government jobs and 33 per cent of posts in local bodies for women. The demand for a similar quota in Central jobs and Assembly and Parliament seats was nearing fruition.
Mr. Karunanidhi said injustice meted out to any individual or a society on the basis of caste, religion and language was a violation of human rights. Atrocities against women, children and labourers should be crushed.
The Chief Minister lamented that ignorance, fear and deception perpetrated by certain societal forces stood in the way of the benefits of Fundamental Rights reaching the poor and other underprivileged sections. Young lawyers were duty-bound to destroy such barriers.
Vice-Chancellor S. Sachidhanandam said a total of 1,862 graduates in three-year and five-year degree programmes received degrees. The first batch of 93 graduates from the five-year B.A.B.L. (Honors) degree course passed out on the occasion.
He said that for the first time law admissions in the State were made without entrance examinations. The university opened a placement cell in April. In 2007, the university introduced non-practising, three-year law courses under the distance education stream, in addition to six post-graduate diploma courses and one certificate course.