Chennai: Actor and politician Rajinikanth on Tuesday refused to apologise for his remarks about social reformer Periyar EV Ramasamy. "I did not make up what I said, there are even published stories in media on it, I can show them. I will not apologize," he told the reporters. The complaint filed by Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam, a splinter group of the Dravidar Kazhagam, alleged that Rajinikanth spread misinformation about Periyar with the intent to malign his reputation. Some parties, including Dravidar Viduthulai Kazhagam, had already protested against Rajinikanth's statement.
Showing clippings from magazines and newspapers, Rajinikanth actor said the idols of Lord Ram and Sita were taken out without dress and the deities also featured a garland of sandals in a rally led by late Periyar E V Ramasamy in 1971.
"A controversy has emerged that I said something that did not happen. But I did not say anything that did not occur. I only said what I heard and things that appeared in magazines. Sorry, I will not express regret or apologise," Rajinikanth told reporters outside his Poes Garden residence.
Rajini further said, "I did not say anything out of imagination or something that was not there. Lakshmanan (then Jan Sangh and now BJP leader) who took part in a dharna (in 1971) has corroborated it."
On the 1971 rally -in which Hindu deities were allegedly taken out naked- the actor said such things that happened in the past should not be raked up again and again. "It was not a thing that can be (easily) forgotten but a thing that must be forgotten," he quipped.
The DVK had demanded an unconditional apology and filed police complaints on January 17, seeking action against him.
The actor, in his address at the 50th anniversary-cum- readers' connect event of Tamil magazine 'Thuglak' on January 14 in Chennai, had said "In 1971, at Salem, Periyar took out a rally in which undressed images of Lord Sri Ramachandramoorthy and Sita—with a garland of sandal—featured and no news outlet published it."
Superstar Rajinikanth's comments come in the backdrop of protests near his residence, over his remarks on EV Ramasamy 'Periyar'. A group named Thanthai Periyar Dravidar Kazhagam was leading the protest.
Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam, however, accused the actor of "uttering a blatant lie" and demanded his unconditional apology and also filed police
complaints seeking action against him. DVK alleged that the actor uttered a "blatant lie that the images of Lord Ram and Sita were taken nude in a rally, held as part of a superstition eradication conference held in 1971 at Salem."