Tamil Nadu

Desecration of cemeteries: 6 detained under NSA

Six of the eight accused who have been arrested in connection with vandalism at 86 cemeteries under the control of Sacred Heart Church at Udaiyarpatti here on October 16 have been detained under the National Security Act.

They are S. Udaiyar (53) of Vannarpet, Tirunelveli district president of Hindu Makkal Katchi, K. Muruganantham (48) of Veeravanallur, T. Sankar (52) of Veeravanallur, R. Sabarirajan alias Ayyappan (50) of Murappanadu in Thoothukudi district, A. Sermadurai (43) of Tirunelveli Town, and A. Kanthan (38) of Tirunelveli.

A group of men, armed with crowbars, hammers and other weapons trespassed into the cemetery at Manimurtheeswaram on October 16 night and smashed the granite cross on 86 tombs and crushed polished granite slabs on the tombs in the cemetery.

As the matter came to light the following morning, it triggered tension in Udaiyaarpatti area and the hostility intensified further when the parishioners of Sacred Heart Church blocked North Bypass Road near the church.

Based on the complaint from Rev. Fr. Joseph Michael Selvaraj, parish priest of the church, Thatchanallur police started their investigation that reportedly revealed that it was the handiwork of S. Udaiyar and seven others.

Subsequently, the police registered case under Sections 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapon), 297 (trespassing on burial places), 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of fifty rupees), 294 B (sings, recites or utters any obscene songs or words in public places), 353 A (assaults or uses criminal force to deter public servant) and 506 (2) (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code against Udaiyar, Muruganantham, Sankar, Sabari Rajan alias Ayyappan, Sermadurai, Kandan, Radhakrishnan (58) of Vannarpet, S. Subramani alias Soda Mani (49) of Veeravanallur.

Moreover, Bishop of Palayamkottai RC Diocese Most Rev. S. Antonysamy, accompanied by the office-bearers of all political parties, including the ruling AIADMK, submitted a petition to Collector Shilpa Prabhakar Satish on October 18 seeking stringent action against those involved in the desecration of cemeteries with the objective of triggering clash between different religious groups.

Subsequently, the six have been detained under the NSA.

Printable version | Nov 28, 2020 11:14:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/desecration-of-cemeteries-6-detained-under-nsa-tirunelveli/article32957865.ece

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