Nine youngsters, reportedly belonging to the Viduthalai Chiruthaikal Katchi (VCK), a Dalit party with strong presence in various pockets of the state, were arrested for allegedly spreading highly inflammatory and derogatory remarks through WhatsApp and other social media channels against the Vanniyar community in the context of the Ponparappi violence, News Minute reported.
Speaking to reporters, Superintendent of Police C Vijayakumar said that the department had received complaints the accused had recorded derogatory messages related to Vanniyar community and spread the same on social media to create social discord.
“Anyone who makes such hate speeches disturbing communal harmony and those who publish or share such recordings on social media will be dealt with strictly as per law. They will also be charged under non-bailable sections of the IPC and Goondas Act,” Vijayakumar added.
According to the police officials in the cybercrime wing in Porayar, an inquiry was conducted in this connection and nine people were arrested. All of them taken in to custody belong to various villages around Porayar. The arrested men are currently lodged in Trichy central prison.
The arrested youth have been identified as Prem Kumar (27) from Porayar, Prem Kumar (28) and Felix Bharathi (22) from Maangudi, Gauthaman (23), John Bose (21), Johnson (20), Anandhababu (20) and Veerapandian (20) from Boodanur, and Mathivanan (23) from Aathupakkam.
Ponparappi in Ariyalur district, that falls under the Chidambaram Lok Sabha constituency, where VCK chief Thol Thirumavalavan was contesting as UPA candidate , witnessed clashes between supporters of Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK), which primarily draws support from the Vanniyar community and VCK.
On April 18, even as the polling was on, a few persons reportedly affiliated to the PMK broke a pot, the VCK chief’s election symbol, triggered a verbal duel and a scuffle. Subsequently, a gang, alleged to be supporters of PMK, entered a Dalit colony in Ponparappi and damaged several houses. Two wheelers were also vandalised. The violence left eight persons injured.