: The Madurai district administration has banned Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) founder S. Ramadoss from entering Madurai till February 21.
According to an official source, an order to this effect was issued by District Collector Anshul Mishra here on Monday. “A copy of it will be served on the PMK leader tonight or tomorrow at his residence,” the source said.
On December 20, Dr. Ramadoss visited the city and addressed members of various caste outfits under the banner “Anaithu Samathuva Paathugaapu Peravai.” Referring to the Dharmapuri incident, the PMK leader had demanded amendments to the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and criticised inter-caste marriages.
Even as he was presiding over the meeting here at a hotel, various Dalit outfits, including Viduthalai Chiruthai Katchi members, staged protests and demanded his arrest for instigating violence and disturbing peace.
The PMK leader had voiced objections to marriages between Dalits and other caste boys and girls, which, according to him, led to erosion in values and triggered unwanted commotion between communities.
Taking umbrage at these remarks, the Dalits demanded a public apology but a determined Dr. Ramadoss said that he would not comply and announced a State-wide protest in all district headquarters on January 24.
Under such circumstances, Mr. Anshul Mishra sent a show cause notice, quoting media reports of his speeches “which are likely to incite ill-feelings and violence in this district, which is a very sensitive place with regard to caste-related matters,” as to why he should not be banned from entering Madurai district.
In response, the PMK advocates made a representation to the Collector a week back urging him to withdraw the notice as Dr. Ramadoss’ remarks should not be viewed as anti-Dalit.
However, after examining the issue, the Collector, the source said, went ahead and issued the ban order on Monday.