After Saint-Poet Thiruvalluvar, DMK Now Tries To Portray Freedom Fighters V O Chidambaram, Muthuramalinga Thevar As Dravidians

After Saint-Poet Thiruvalluvar, DMK Now Tries To Portray Freedom Fighters V O Chidambaram, Muthuramalinga Thevar As DravidiansDMK's attempt at appropriating the legacy of freedom fighters.
  • DMK celebrates freedom fighters, V O Chidambaram and Pasumpon Muthuramalinga Thevar, devoid of the traditional ash and kumkum marks they wear.

After having clothed Tamil saint-poet Thiruvalluvar with a white dhoti and removing his ash marks on his forehead, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) is now trying an encore on freedom fighters such as V O Chidambaram and Pasumpon Muthuramalinga Thevar.

On 18 November, the remembrance day of V O Chidambaram (VOC), who fought the British valiantly by floating a shipping firm and going to jail for defying their authority, one of DMK’s top leaders Kanimozhi Karunanidhi tweeted that it was a “remembrance day” of VOC.

Kanimozhi, daughter of the late M Karunanidhi, neither recalled the hardships of VOC nor praised his sacrifice in the tweet. But the tweet of the DMK parliament member from Thoothukudi Lok Sabha constituency displayed the picture of the freedom fighter without the traditional ash and kumkum marks.

On social media, Kanimozhi was immediately confronted why the kumkum mark was missing and she was criticised.

Some reminded her how VOC sold his properties to run a ship only to defy the British and finally ended up selling kerosene at Mannady in Chennai.

Her tweet also reminded social media of how she had also stripped another freedom fighter and All India Forward Bloc leader U Pon Muthuramalinga Thevar of his ash marks.

The comments on the ash and kumkum marks come on the heels of the incident on 4 November when DMK president M K Stalin had reportedly thrown away ash given as prasad when he visited Thevar’s memorial on his birth anniversary.

Quite a few eyebrows were raised but Stalin told the media that it concerned his outlook on religion and he would not regret it.

Tamil actor and state assembly legislator Karunas had demanded an apology from Stalin for the act.

Stalin claims to be an atheist and hence is seen in public as being a rationalist.

At the same time, his wife Durga, who has now begun appearing in the party posters along with Stalin, is a staunch believer in god.

She has been seen visiting various temples over the last few years with critics saying she was seeking divine intervention for DMK regaining power and Stalin becoming the state chief minister.

The DMK has been accused of trying to “Dravidianise” freedom fighters and saints such as Thiruvalluvar in the name of Tamil.

One person said on social media that the DMK would not have dared to do such things had the people opposed the draping of Thiruvalluvar in a white robe and removal of ash marks on his forehead.

M.R. Subramani is Executive Editor, Swarajya. He tweets @mrsubramani


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