Tamil Nadu

Now Stalin writes to PM Modi to include T.N.’s tableau in Republic Day parade

M.K. Stalin

M.K. Stalin

Disappointed that the State has been deprived of the opportunity to participate in the Republic Day Parade in Delhi on January 26, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin on Monday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to include the State’s tableau in the parade to showcase the freedom fighters from Tamil Nadu.

“Exclusion of the tableau of Tamil Nadu will deeply hurt the sentiments and patriotic feelings of the people of the State. That the committee chooses to ignore and reject all the seven designs shown to it as per the modifications suggested by its members is unacceptable,” Mr. Stalin contended in his letter to the Prime Minister. A copy of the letter was shared with the media.

He pointed out that the Union Defence Ministry had proposed the theme of the tableaux for the Republic Day Parade, 2022: “India @ 75 – Freedom Struggle, Ideas @ 75, Achievements @ 75, Actions @ 75 & Resolve @ 75” and said the State had submitted sketches choosing the theme “Tamil Nadu in the Freedom Struggle” depicting the renowned freedom fighters from Tamil Nadu.

“In fact, the representatives of the State appeared before the Expert Committee for selection for tableaux thrice. In the first meeting, the Expert Committee expressed satisfaction about the theme ‘Tamil Nadu in the Freedom Struggle’. The design depicted freedom fighters of Tamil Nadu during the British Raj in the front and during the East India company’s period at the back of the tableau,” he said.

The design had V.O. Chidambaranar (V.O.C.), the famous freedom fighter who founded the Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company in 1906 during Indian Independence movement to compete against the British. V.O.C. was charged with sedition by the British Government and sentenced to imprisonment.

The design also had Subramania Bharathi popularly known as Maha Kavi Bharathiar who kindled patriotism in the minds of the people with his fiery writings during the Independence movement. The poet was held in high esteem by Mahatma Gandhi also, the CM pointed out.

The rear of the tableau had been designed to showcase a statue of Rani Velu Nachiyar riding a horse with a sword and with women soldiers. She was the first Indian queen to wage a war with the East India Company in India. She was the Queen of Sivagangai Region from 1780 to 1790. She blew up an ammunition storage of East India Company by arranging a suicide attack, he said.

“Marudhupandiyar brothers (known as Maruthu brothers) gave protection to Queen Velu Nachiyar and helped her win the war against the East India Company and win back Sivagangai. They also became Kings of Sivagangai and later were executed by the East India Company. The images of Maruthupandiyars are proposed to be depicted in the tableaux. V.O.Chidambaranar, Maha Kavi Bharathiar, Veeramangai Velu Nachiyar, Maruthu brothers are a few among the several freedom fighters,” he pointed out.

“This is a matter of grave concern to the State of Tamil Nadu and its people and I request your urgent intervention to arrange to include the tableau of Tamil Nadu that will showcase the freedom fighters of Tamil Nadu in the Republic Day Parade 2022 in New Delhi,” Mr. Stalin reiterated.

In a statement, MDMK founder Vaiko pointed out that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on multiple occasions lauded Subramaniya Bharathi and the contributions of Bharathi, V.O.C. and Velu Nachiyar were no less than freedom fighters from the North India.

Mr. Vaiko said that the Union government did not have the powers to exclude any State. “I urge that the tableaux of Tamil Nadu, Kerala and West Bengal should be included.”

PMK founder S. Ramadoss on Monday said the Centre should reconsider its decision and accept Tamil Nadu’s tableau to be a part of the Republic Day parade in New Delhi.

Tamil Maanila Congress president G.K. Vasan also requested the Centre to ensure that the tableau of Tamil Nadu showcasing the freedom fighters of the State is included in the Republic Day Parade 2022.

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Printable version | Apr 1, 2022 7:36:15 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/include-tns-tableau-in-republic-day-parade-stalin/article38284255.ece