Tamil land is being targeted by the Hindutva forces and their agenda is to finish the Dravidian movement

Iconic statue of EVR Periyar at the Periyar Thidal

Tamilnadu
will always reject Hindutva project to eliminate Dravidian identity work of EVR
Periyar says Dr K Veeramani

Tamil
land is being targeted by the Hindutva forces and their agenda is to finish the
Dravidian movement

Iconic
statue of EVR Periyar at the Periyar Thidal. His powerful presence in the
Dravidian land ensured that the hate-mongering caste supremacists
remain out of the power game in Tamilnadu but now the Tamil land is being
targeted by the Hindutva forces and their agenda is to finish the Dravidian
movement in the state.

I asked this
question to Dr K Veeramani, founder DK, whether the Dravidian
politicians
who swore in the name of Thanthi Periyar, not compromised
by the Hindutva. I also felt that after the demise of towering leaders of the
movement, both J. Jayalalitha and Kaliangar Karunanidhi, there is a great risk
of the powerful lobby of Hindutva through their money and muscle power,

Why is
Periyar’s life not taught in the schools and colleges of Tamilnadu and rest of
the country?

Is Periyar’s
achievements and sayings not important? I feel the powerful symbolism of
Black
is not merely beautiful but powerful too is reflected in
Periyar’s action more than anyone else. Where do you find the Black shirt and
white pant/ Sarong/Lungi combination? In the cinema, in popular culture it is
always black pant white shirt, but Periyar’s idea provided Black
superiority over white
and that is why his symbolism is much more
powerful than anyone else but I don’t know whether the African American know
about Periyar’s work.

I asked this
question to Dr K Veeramani and he said that people are now reading to Dr
Ambedkar as his writings were in English, Periyar’s work is in Tamil and need
to be translated into English but DK is very careful of it as a lot of ideas
may be misinterpreted by the translators but they are now on the process.

Periyar was
a thinker, an intellectual and I call him the most powerful public
intellectual. Many people feel ‘Public Intellectual’ is a term for serious
‘academics’ but I think it should not be their monopoly. Periyar was the most
influential man in our public life as far as Tamilnadu is concern. He had the
courage to call a spade a spade. His writings on women are unmatched even today
and he can also be termed as one of the greatest feminists of our time whose
work most of our elite feminists may not even know.

Periyar
spoke against all forms of social evils and attacked the root of it.

At the time
when people say that in India, nothing can move without religion and we should
‘respect’ people’s ‘sentiments’, we must remember Periyar and his success
story. Periyar thrashed Brahmanism in Tamilnadu, made the Dravidian people
aware of the exploitative nature of Brahmanism and provided his own cultural
alternative like self-respect marriages.

Tamilnadu
still remain a fascinating state though Dravidian parties compromised with
Hindutva and that is why Periyar always maintained that we must not be part of
the power politics. Social movements must remain devoted to the cause of the
people and must not become political parties as then they will compromise the
interest of the people.

Dr Veeramani
says, that DK remain committed to Periyar’s vision of strong social movements
and our cadres don’t aspire to become MPs and MLAs even when their cadres do
work and spread the message of Periyar all over the state which only benefitted
the Dravidian political parties.

Periyar must
go international and his thoughts should spread worldwide to promote humanism,
rational thinking and powerful message of black identity. Periyar is more
important because it is also essential to know that you can bend the power
without being in power. Periyar’s power came from his commitment to the cause
of people that is why they were ready to listen and follow him despite his
strong words against religious belief. He spoke powerful against superstition.

Periyar
was not merely a rationalist and atheist but openly propagated that.

Despite not
in politics, Periyar defined the Dravidian political principles and
ideology that Tamiladu saw. It is these Dravidian principles, that despite all
faults of political leaders and their compromises, Tamilnadu remain one of the
best governed state, better in human development indexes where children get far
better mid-day meal than any other state and they started it on their own.
Tamilnadu still has 69% reservation and far superior to any other state in
governance.

Success of Periyar’s
model in Tamilnadu
suggest that if we are true to public cause, we can
speak against false religious beliefs and succeed. Today’s politicians can’t do
it as they use religious superstition to promote their devotees and bhaktas.
Periyar want enlightened cadres and not brainless bhaktas and that is why he
succeeded. There are attempt to finish Dravidian principles and Periyar’s work
but as Dr Veeramani says, Hindutva forces will try everything but Tamilnadu
will reject them as it rejected them in the past.

The
comprehensive and enlightening conversation with Thiru Dr K Veeramani will be
available in the coming days.

Vidya
Bhushan Rawat

November 3rd, 2019

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