Arundhati Roy receives ‘Ambedkar Sudar’ award

May 03, 2015 08:10 am | Updated April 02, 2016 08:13 pm IST - CHENNAI:

“The major challenge before us is to fight caste without inadvertently strengthening and deepening caste divisions that were designed to prevent political solidarity. This makes it a very complicated struggle — because you will see people striking radical postures, encouraging isolationism, and destroying the possibility of solidarity which defeats the very purpose of the struggle,” said Booker Prize-winning writer Arundhati Roy after receiving the ‘Ambedkar Sudar’ award from Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi at Periyar Thidal on Saturday evening.

The writer, who received the award from VCK leader Thol Thirumavalavan, further said that the fight against caste will not be successful unless one continuously and empirically uncovers the connections between Brahminism, capitalism and imperialism.

“How else was apartheid dismantled — at least in name — in South Africa? We need the world to look with absolute contempt upon this society that practices this most horrible form of discrimination. Right now most people outside India have no idea what caste is — to them it is something mystical connected to Hindusim, to fashionable vegetarianism and yoga and to the most fashionable thing of all — Gandhism. Annihilating the caste system is a task to which each of us must bring our skills and abilities,” she said.

Introducing the writer to the cadres, Mr. Thirumavalavan said the party is proud to give Ms. Roy the award as she has always spoken for marginalised sections of society. “She has always sided with the oppressed. She has constantly written against caste and hegemonic powers of the world. She has helped in taking Dr. Ambedkar’s thoughts to millions,” he said.

She was amongst five other awardees, who received awards named after leaders. Leader of Thanthai Periyar Dravida Kazhagam K. Ramakrishnan received the ‘Periyar Oli’ award, M.H. Jawahirullah of Manithaneya Makkal Katchi was bestowed with ‘Kayithey Millat Pirai’ award, Professor K. Neduncheziyan was given the ‘Iyotheethasar Adhavan’ award, ‘Avvai Natarasan’ received ‘Semmozhi Gnayiru’ award and the late G.K. Moopanar was posthumously awarded the ‘Kamarajar Kadhir’ award.

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