Dravidian Tamil Nadu Vs Ancient Tamilakam: Fracas Over Governor Ravi’s Remarks

Dravidian Tamil Nadu Vs Ancient Tamilakam: Fracas Over Governor Ravi’s Remarks

by Swarajya Staff - Jan 6, 2023 08:07 PM +05:30 IST
Dravidian Tamil Nadu Vs Ancient Tamilakam: Fracas Over Governor Ravi’s RemarksTamil Nadu Governor R N Ravi
  • While the name 'Tamil Nadu' was given to the state only in 1969, according to Tamil historian TS Krishnan, the name Tamil Nadu has been found in ancient texts dating to the Sangam era.

In a show of opposition to Tamil Nadu Governor RN Ravi’s remarks made at an event to felicitate volunteers and organizers of the Kashi Tamil Sangamam that it would be better to call the state as ‘Tamilakam’ or ‘Tamizhagam’ rather than Tamil Nadu, Dravidian party supporters have started using the hashtag ‘#TamilNadu’ on social media.

He had said the following-

“In Tamil Nadu, there has been a regressive politics that we are Dravidians, and by virtue of the Constitution, we have been brought together.

"Over the past half a century efforts were made to reinforce this narrative that we are not part of the nation integrally. That is why there is too much stress on federalism, without realising that Bharat existed several thousands of years before these states were created.  

“Here in Tamil Nadu, a different kind of narrative has been created. Everything applicable for the whole of the country, Tamil Nadu will say no. It has become a habit. So many theses have been written—all false and poor fiction. This must be broken. Truth must prevail.

“In fact, Tamil Nadu is the land which holds the soul of Bharat. It is the identity of Bharat. In fact, Thamizhagam (also written as Tamilakam) would be the more appropriate word to call it. The rest of the country suffered a lot of devastation at the hands of foreigners for a very long time.

"But somehow, Tamil has been preserved for several years in Tamil Nadu. So, this is the hope to rejuvenate Bharat. All the narratives based on falsehood should be broken and Kashi Tamil Sangamam is a very powerful beginning for it.”

The name Tamil Nadu was given to the state by the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) government in the year 1969 when CN Annadurai was the chief minister. Earlier it was known as Madras State.

According to Tamil historian TS Krishnan, the name ‘Tamil Nadu’ can be found in ancient texts dating to the Sangam period.

According to political observers, Ravi might have said so because he felt that ‘Tamil Nadu’ has separatist connotations as ‘Nadu’ has often been taken to mean ‘a nation or country.’ His remarks too dwelt on how the nature of politics in the state (which he called ‘regressive’) had led to the feeling of 'Tamils are different.’

‘Tamilakam’ is usually used to mean ‘the Tamil land’, which while not having a separatist connotation, would however refer to areas belonging to neighbouring states and parts of Sri Lanka as well.

However, some say that there is no need to think that the name ‘Tamil Nadu’ has any separatist connotations because the name has been incorporated into the constitution and is as harmless as the phrase ‘Telugu Desam’ which nobody usually eyes with suspicion of separatism.

Also, they say that 'Tamil Nadu' cannot exactly mean a country or nation as there are many Nadus within Tamil Nadu itself like Kongu Nadu, Pandya Nadu and Chola Nadu.

Also Read: 'Tamil Nadu Has Witnessed Regressive Politics For The Last 50 Years': Governor RN Ravi

Get Swarajya in your inbox everyday. Subscribe here.

An Appeal...

Dear Reader,

As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.

Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.

We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.

Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.

Become A Patron
Become A Subscriber
Comments ↓
Get Swarajya in your inbox everyday. Subscribe here.

Latest Articles

    Artboard 4Created with Sketch.