Chennai: Rendering a Sanskrit invocation song at an event attended by two union ministers in IIT Madras, has generated a controversy a Tamil song is traditionally sung at state government functions.
The students sung ‘Maha Ganapathim Manasa Smarami’,penned by late poet Muthuswami Dikshithar as the invocation song soon after arrival of dignitaries for the foundation stone laying ceremony of National Technology Centre for Ports, Waterways and Coasts, to be set up along with IIT Madras.
At government functions in the state, only “Tamil Thaai Vazhthu” (invocation song of mother Tamil), penned by Manomaniam Sundaram Pillai, is played in the beginning and the national anthem towards the end of the events.
Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Water Resources Nitin Gadkari and Union Minister of State for Finance Pon Radhakrishnan participated at the function.
Director of IIT-M Bhaskar Ramamoorthy, who was also present at the event, said the institution does not issue any directions to students for a particular song to be sung.
“We do not issue any directions to the students. It is they who choose the invocation song and render it on such occasions”, he said.
Meanwhile, MDMK Chief Vaiko condemned rendering of the Sanskrit song and said it was not acceptable to ‘impose’ it at the function. He demanded that stringent action be taken against those responsible for the incident.”
“Both Nitin Gadkari and Pon Radhakrishnan, who were at the function, should publicly tender an apology for the incident, as singing of the Tamil invocation song is the usual practice in any government function,” he told reporters at Coimbatore.
He alleged that the Centre was trying to impose Sanskrit and Hindi by various means.
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