YouTuber who alleged DMK had terrorist links slapped with complaint
The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) has filed a complaint against a YouTuber for posting "false statements about the party." The YouTuber, Maridhas, who is a social commentator and a writer, had recently shared videos on his YouTube channel, Maridhas Answers, where he accused the MK Stalin-led party of colluding with Pakistan. The videos came on after DMK's criticism of the abrogation of Article 370.
Backstory: DMK had openly condemned abrogation of Article 370
On August 5, the Centre abrogated Article 370 and bifurcated Jammu and Kashmir into the Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh. The same day, DMK President, Thalapathi MK Stalin, condemned the move, calling it a "murder of democracy." The party has since maintained its stance, and also held protests against it.
Who is Maridhas and what's his YouTube channel about?
Maridhas, a Madurai native, is a post-graduate in engineering. His YouTube channel Maridhas Answers (with 167k subscribers) has posted videos against DMK and Congress in the past. On August 18, the channel shared the video "Should the DMK be banned?," followed by "Is DMK Influenced by Pakistan" on August 24. Last month, the channel posted the video "Is DMK the enemy of Hindus?"
Maridhas alleged DMK is a separatist party; has terrorist links
Notably, in his videos, Maridhas accused the DMK of being a separatist and anti-national party. "DMK has always been in touch with Pakistan and is a separatist party," he said. Going further, he accused the party of supporting terrorist organizations.
DMK claims Maridhas is branding Muslims in Kashmir as terrorists
Now, in its complaint to the city police commissioner, the DMK said Maridhas is "portraying Muslims in Kashmir as terrorists, thereby, creating ill-will against that group." It said, "Therefore, the support extended by DMK towards the people of Kashmir for their fundamental rights like free speech and assembly, representative democracy and protection from unlawful arrest is being misconstrued by Maridhas as support for terrorists."
"Publishing false statements a cognizable offense under IPC Section 505(2)"
Further, DMK Rajya Sabha MP and organization secretary RS Bharathi, who filed the complaint, stated, "The publication of statements which are baseless, false and untrue is directly covered under Section 505(2) of Indian Penal Code, 1860 and is a cognizable offense."
Maridhas reacts, says "DMK should stop spreading false information"
Responding to the complaint, Maridhas wrote on Facebook, "DMK should stop spreading false information on me and oppose me in an upright manner." He added, "If people think that I'm inciting them in the name of religion, I'm ready to leave this country. At the same time, I will also voice my support for the Hindus. I don't have to fake secularism."
Aftermath: #ISupportMaridhas and #MentalMaridhas go viral after complaint
The complaint against Maridhas, who has also written a book titled Naan en Modi ah aadarikkiren (Why I am supporting Modi), has left the Internet divided with contrasting hashtags #ISupportMaridhas and #MentalMaridhas, and both are going viral on Twitter, with the former garnering more tweets.