TIRUVANNAMALAI: Chief Minister MK Stalin here on Saturday said the “Dravidian model” meant ensuring equal growth of all districts and boosting industrial and social development; it is the motto of the DMK government.
Speaking at a government meeting here, the CM said he was giving this clarification to those who ask whether undertaking work in temples is the model. “We are not against any religion, but we are enemies of those who use religion to divide people,” Stalin said.
In 1925, the government led by the Justice Party, the predecessor of the DK, introduced the HR&CE (Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department) Act following public appeals. In 2004, when the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) tried to take over the temples, the devotees appealed to the then CM M Karunanidhi to keep the temples under the law, as they believed that the administration of the temples would relax under the ASI.
Karunanidhi was campaigning for parliamentary elections at that time. The DMK took all 40 MP seats and held talks with Congress, its ally in the Centre. The administration of the temple was therefore retained by the state, Stalin said.
The DMK government was currently doing a great job in developing the temples through the HR&CE department. Many development projects were taking place here (Tiruvannamalai Sri Arunachaleswarar Temple) including laying of roads on the way to Girivalam and electrical works in the temple.
Earlier in the day, the Chief Minister laid the foundation stone for 246 projects worth Rs 340.21 crore and inaugurated 91 completed projects worth Rs 70.27 crore. It also inaugurated the distribution of government social assistance worth Rs 693.02 crore to 1,71,169 recipients.
Public Works Minister EV Velu, Higher Education Minister K Ponmudi, Minority Welfare Minister KS Masthan, Vice President K Pichandi, Tiruvannamalai MP CN Annadurai, Collector B Murugesh and MPs were present.