The Madras High Court said yesterday that the termination of 61 Nadigar Sangam members from the association was valid. The court is yet to give its verdict on whether the postponement of Nadigar Sangam elections can be called off.
The hearing was in response to a complaint raised by the 61 members from the Sangam who claimed that they were removed without proper investigation with the motive of stopping them from casting their votes in the elections. To this, the association explained that 44 of them were shifted from the category of professional artistes to amateur artists, four were suspended, and remaining 13 members were eligible to vote. This decision was taken two years ago after consultation with the general body, and theirs was the first team to implement a database of eligible members.
However, the Registrar of Societies of Tamil Nadu suspended the elections on grounds of violation of the society rules asking for elections to be deferred until it investigates the matter.
Nadigar Sangam general secretary, actor Vishal, moved court challenging the order saying the registrar does not have the power to stall elections under Section 36(1) of the Tamil Nadu Societies Registration Act, 1975. Vishal said they should not have interfered as election was already announced by the election officer, a retired judge appointed by the court, and the Registrar acted with an intent to disrupt elections.
Today, the Madras High Court is likely to give a verdict on election dates and venue. Vishal and members of the Pandavar Ani have said they are confident that the postponement of elections will be called off. The elections were scheduled to be held at MGR Janaki College on June 23, but it also faced problems when a civil suit was filed by a person named A Elumalai, reportedly associated with ex-office bearer Radha Ravi, to stop the Sangam from conducting elections. Following this, the government requested for a change in location of the elections citing public hindrance and traffic issues. Vishal moved court against this accusing the police of refusing to provide security, but the court asked the Sangam to change venue.
Pandavar Ani is led by the present office-bearers Nasser, Vishal, and Karthi. Sankardas Ani, contesting opposite them is led by Bhagiyaraj, Udhaya, and Kutty Padmini.