Chennai: Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) chief MK Stalin followed his late father M Karunanidhi’s footsteps as he took oath in the “name of conscience” while being sworn in as Tamil Nadu Chief Minister on Friday at Raj Bhavan here.
Along with Chief Minister MK Stalin; 33 others also took oath as Cabinet Ministers of state in the “name of conscience”.
Traditionally, most ministers take oath in the name of God. However, today all ministers of the Stalin Cabinet took this oath in the “name of conscience”.
Interestingly, Hindu religious and endowment minister Sekar Babu also took oath in the “name of conscience”.
The party’s ideological leanings come from former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, who was a self-confessed atheist. The body of Karunanidhi was also buried and not cremated, without any religious rituals at the funeral.
DMK leaders have in their history never taken oath in the name of God. This DMK tradition was maintained by Stalin and his newly-inducted ministerial colleagues today.
Interestingly, the founder of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu CN Annadurai had also taken oath in the “name of conscience”.
Despite being the follower of DMK’s atheist ideology, Stalin promised in his election campaign that funds for Hindu pilgrimage annual selection of up to one lakh Hindu devotees would be funded with Rs 25,000 each to travel to any one of the famous pilgrim temples such as Rameswaram, Kasi, Kedarnath, Badrinath, Tirupathi, Puri Jagganthar.
DMK in its election manifesto promised that its government will allocate Rs 1,000 crore exclusively for the renovation of Hindu temples. Village priests will get a monthly salary of Rs 2,000 and pensions will be increased from Rs 3,000 to Rs 4,000.
The manifesto also stated that Rs 200 crore allocation for the renovation of mosques and churches in the state.
MK Stalin was administered the oath by Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit.
DMK won 133 seats on its own in the 234-member assembly and fought the polls in alliance with some other parties including Congress.