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Periyar University's History department students were asked to answer a question based on caste. The first year MA in History students were asked "Which one is the lower caste that belongs to Tamil Nadu?". The question created an uproar among disgruntled students.

The choice based question had four option mentioning four different castes.

The question went viral on social media with netizens slamming the very idea of reinforcing caste based discrimination through this questions.

Netizens also slammed the college authorities for making a question paper at a university named after the Dravidian icon Periyar, who strived to abolish caste.

The Opposition also slammed the government over the caste row as the leader of the opposition Edappadi K Palaniswami asked on Twitter whether insulting the ideology of Periyar and facilitating caste inequality among students through questions like these in a semester examination is DMK’s Dravidian model and social justice.

A committee headed by a chief officer would be formed by the state department of higher education to conduct an investigation. According to a press release from the department, "due action will be initiated on behalf of the department against the wrongdoers." The University, on the other hand, announced that it will create an inquiry committee in the interim.

Speaking on the issue, the Vice Chancellor said that another university had prepared the question and he did not get any information regarding the paper.

"Question papers for exams are not prepared by Periyar University. Other university and college lecturers prepared the question paper. Usually, to avoid a question paper leak, we don't read the question paper before the exam. I didn't get any info regarding the controversial question. We will investigate this," the VC said.

Periyar University is a university in Salem, Tamil Nadu, India. It was established by the Government of Tamil Nadu in 1997. It is named after social reformer Thanthai Periyar E. V. Ramasamy.

For the uninitiated, Erode Venkatappa Ramasamy, revered as Periyar or Thanthai Periyar, was an Indian social activist and politician who started the Self-Respect Movement and Dravidar Kazhagam. He is known as the 'Father of the Dravidian movement'.

He rebelled against Brahminical dominance and gender and caste inequality in Tamil Nadu. Since 2021, the Indian state of Tamil Nadu celebrates his birth anniversary as 'Social Justice Day'

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