Special Correspondent

CHENNAI: The Centre should take urgent steps to protect the lives and property of the innocent Tamils in Sri Lanka, according to a resolution adopted at a meeting held here on Sunday.

Through the other resolutions, the Community Forum for Intellectuals asked the Centre to confer the Padma awards on Vanniyar leaders S.S. Ramasamy Padayachi, Manickavelu Naicker and Sardar Adhikesava Nayar and issue commemorative stamps in recognition of their contribution to the country and the community.

Forum founder-president R. Anbarasu requested that the State government revive and rename the Vanniyar Vaariam as the Vanniyars public property protection welfare board, establish all-India administrative coaching centres in all district headquarters and celebrate the birth anniversary of Ramasamy Padayachi as a government function.

Mr. Anbarasu, a former Congress MP, also urged the Central and State governments to reserve at least one Assembly constituency in each district for the Vanniyars to avoid an unequal distribution of reserved constituencies. He also sought due representation to the community in the All India Congress Committee and the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee. At least five Vanniyars should be included in the elite panel of 15 names to be recommended for the post of judges in the Madras High Court.

All-India Congress Committee secretary K.B. Krishnamurthy said the presence of the Vanniyars in various party bodies had dwindled. TNCC president K.V. Thangkabalu said that being the champion of the Vanniyars, he would take up their grievances with the party leadership. Vanniyar Sangam president A.K. Natarajan released a book that contained the speeches Mr. Anbarasu made in Parliament. It was received by the former Congress MP, S.S.R. Ramadoss.