Saturday, December 09, 2006

The Favorite Sport of Tamils - Statue breaking

It is a recurrent issue in Tamil Nadu. Either we fight for installing some one's statue, or for removing it or for re installing it. In 1994-95 the entire South Tamil Nadu was on a boil with repeated caste conflicts between Thevars, the dominant OBC community and Dalits. The representative statue of Thevars was their foremost community leader, Pasumpon Muthuramalinga Thevar and for Dalits it was Ambedkar. Both these men had their statues vandalised on regular basis. It came to such a state that the statues had to be protected by cages.

After 10 years, now it seems to be the turn of Periyar EV Ramasamy, the leading rationalist of yesteryears and Lord Ganesha. The leading political parties in the state, DMK and ADMK, consider Periyar as their Guru though the ADMK is a diluted version. It is an irony of course that Periyar, who went on breaking statues in his life time, has his statues installed almost in all towns of Tamilnadu.

The starting point for this round was the installation of Periyar's statue within 100 mtrs of the Sri Rangam temple. Some one, most probably a devotee, vandalised the statue and the fire started. There have been incidents of Periyar's followers breaking statues in temples. Though it is technically a fight between atheists / rationalists and devotees, there is a caste undertone as in everything in Tamilnadu. All the statues that were broken were only from temples of the 'Aryan' Gods - Lord Ganesha, Ram and so on. No one has tried to even go near the temples of Local Gods - the various Amman temples and Ayyanar temples. That proves my pet theory, that in Tamilnadu, rationalism means anti brahminism.

22 comments:

Nilu said...

paarpaneeya athikkam ozhiga.

Suresh Babu said...

Brahminism is full of hatred against the locals of India. You can find scores of evidence from brahminical literature like vedas, upanishads, smiritis etd., Though atheism was one of the principle of Dravidian movement people accepted its anti-brahminical stance and rationalism. Periyar is a philosopher who has broken the centuries old myths and brahminical dogmas.

Brahminical outfits in the name Hindu in their titles(Hindu Makkal Katchi, Hindu Munnani) are desecrating and footwear garlanding the statues of Periyar. This shows their inability to break the propaganda of Periyar.

This is an usual tactics followed by the saffron gangs to instigate communal clashes. We have ample evidences like Gujarat, Mumbai, Ayodhya etc.,

Anonymous said...

Why is it ironic that EVR has statues in every district? Is there no difference between a statue and an idol?

As for rationalism and caste, weren't you just explaining how people become hypocrites to get along with their own community? Brahmins and Brahmin organs such as the Hindu also choose to focus their rationalist enthusiasms on non-Brahmin practices rather than their own.

Nastikan

Nilu said...

sures babu,
did you also know that the brahmins were actually out of brahma's ass? it is the non brahmins who were born off his penis. you should not forget that also.

Innocent Bystander said...

This comment-space is going to get ugly.

Chenthil said...

Nilu, some amount of decorum please.

Suresh Babu, let's not go there. I am appreciative of Periyar's movement in TN. What I am afraid is by deifying him, we are losing what he fought for. How many of Periyar's followers accept his thoughts on Feminism or Rationalism? By slotting him into anti brahmin mode, both his supporters and opposers are reducing him to yet another sectarian leader.

Nastikan, as it stands now, in TN, Periyar is almost an idol. I am saying don't reduce him to anti brahminism, it provides fodder for his detractors.

Innocent Bystander, can't avoid it. This is not a soft topic.

Hawkeye said...

i have never found anyone including periyar to be really concerned about bringing out the truth.

he segmented the population better to create a 'us' vs 'them' and people identified with that and rallied behind ( just like the reason why 'nayagan' was a success) him.

he is like ramdoss, a person who had a vehicle to promote himself.

if we can accept muslims and christian converts as part of tamil culture, brahmin/brahmin converts have merged in with the culture about 1500 yrs before muslims and christians came. nobody really knows who the real tamils are.

around 50% of 12 the 'azhwars' - the reasone why srirangam is srirangam - werent "brahmins". their tamizh is more chaste than any of these 'tamil protectors' and their timeline seems to be prior to the advent of 'brahmins'.

A person seeking the truth about 'the real tamils' wudnt mislead illiterate/naive people to this sort of incorrect blame war.

Anonymous said...

How would you propose cultivating Periyar's legacy of rationalism, outside of vandalizing Amman temples?

Nastikan

Nilu said...

The issue is cement.

Chenthil said...

Nastikan, I would say - include him in the School syllabus. Let the students know his views, and let them discuss. Discussion leads to spreading of his ideas than simply putting up statues and garlanding it once a year. If the Periyar followers can set up Engineering colleges, surely setting up one school in each district HQ shouldn't be a problem.

Anonymous said...

You guys are stupid. Do anything against to one particular community is not that Great Leader’s vision. He did that time because it was necessary. Installing his statue and lock Poor’s money in the locker through big educational institution is horrible. Stupid guys..stop preaching and see your back. If you can not claim through merit go and hit against the wall

Anonymous said...

That was a rather non-whistle-adikkable reply. (Is EVR really not in TN syllabi these days?)

Nastikan

Zero said...

Chenthil, rationality (or rationalism for that matter) in syllabus? (Or, were you suggesting the inclusion of Periyar as a man/leader in History book -- which I think is already being done?)

So much for rationality, when every adult would know what it is all about -- using what's usually called the right side of a brain which everyone is blessed with. But, only if the said adult chooses to do so. With due respect to Periyar, irrationality is underrated.

Zero said...

Uh, left brain, I meant. See?

Anil P said...

It's eventually about Might is Right, and here if might is derived from numbers, then so be it. It's nobody's guess that numbers make for mobs, and mobs have as much brains as chickpeas.

Silanthimanithan said...

The Pig is a wonderful animal providing bacon and as such cleaning the society of its waste just like Periyar tried to clean society of its prejudice. It too needs some respect and we can install a statue in front of the dargah in trichy. It is only fair to the Pig and as such any protests against this from any community should be termed as mischeivous.

Guevara Giri said...

When we talk or write about Periyar, we should look at the essense of what he stood for. May be the medthodology was mis-directed but to get to his point he attacked from the Top..Brahmins.

Guevara Giri said...

On an afterthought, If Periyar was born a Muslim a Fatwa would have been sent to get rid of him. Huh

Suresh Babu said...

Periyar was not anti-brahmin. He was against brahminism (Paarpaneeyam). Paarpaneeyam includes following and implementing all the brahminist principles. He maintained his friendship with many of his brahmin friends including Rajaji, throughout his life. At the same time he used to condemn oppression in any form. Whenever anti-brahminism is discussed, brahmins used to make hue and cry and project it as anti-brahmin.

Throughout Periyar's life he was against brahminism & hinduism. Because this is the only religion in the world which treats its people differently based on birth through caste system. Periyar was always against this varna system of brahminism and condemned the system which is filled with vengeance and hatred.

Hinduism is like a pyramid structure, the shape of temple (kovil), which is built on caste system. Brahmins and upper castes always benefited from this system. Sudras and dalits where oppressed throughout the centuries. Brahmins used their caste and enjoyed special privilege for thousands of years. Periyar within his lifetime exposed this inhuman, fraudulent system.

Suresh Babu said...

Periyar never bothered about these personal attacks during his days itself. He was attacked with stones and slippers, for servicing the downtrodden and questioning the brahmanist dogmas. Periyar used to say, If one comes to service people he has to face all these. Still he is attacked by the religious chauvinists.

Previously, saffron rowdies broke mosques. Now breaking Periyar's statues. Who knows, breaking and killing may be the hobbies of these criminals. They could not tolerate the rationalist questions posed by Periyar and breaking his statues.

In many instances the brahminist thugs have dis-respected Periyar and Ambedkar's statues with 'chappal' garlanding, broken them in Tamil Nadu.

Anonymous said...

Periyar's ideals are too narrow to be called something great. While targetting Brahmins and Brahminism, he as well as his supposed followers of today, never talk anything bad about other castes who oppress dalits and other weaker sections. Can any follower of Periyar dare to describe Pasumpon Muthuramalinga Thevar as uncivilized just because he believed in God. Could they install statues infront of churches and mosques. It is only a play on words between brahmin and brahminism. How can u differentiate dancer from a dance.Similarly Periyar never bothered to change his name which is ironically named after a Hindu God.The institutions run by his followers never care to give maximum opportunities to Dalits as they cannot offer money. The lawyers,doctors,engineers of all these so called rationalists hail mainly from Brahmin or other upper castes. Rationalism and Rationalists are the great joke and jokers respectively in Tamilnadu. Can these rationalists who hate Aryans and Sanskrit,do anything against the Ambedkar's views on Hindi. So when one can have brains, it is useless to criticise him in the name of caste. While certain Brahminical principles went against the Dalits in the past, our modern politicians who belong to other castes,are in no way better.In fact, all the so called Dravidian Leaders hail from the other castes and not from Dalits. So dont be fooled by mere rhetoric .

Anonymous said...

Poor fellow, the whole life is fought against god and temples, but now he is forced to stand before a temple continuou
sly.