Tamil Nadu

Thirumavalavan meets DPI office-bearers in Maharashtra

Thol. Thirumavalavan

Thol. Thirumavalavan

In a bid to forge a social alliance of like-minded outfits, VCK founder and MP Thol. Thirumavalavan on Sunday met the office-bearers of the Dalit Panthers of India’s Maharashtra unit. The meeting took place in Goa.

Mr. Thirumavalavan has been seeking new avenues to build his party by taking part in events in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh organised by the party units.  Recently, he unveiled the statue of the Father of the Constitution, B.R. Ambedkar, along with Union Minister Ramdas Athawale, at an event organised by the Adi Dravida Mahajana Sangam at Dharavi in Mumbai.

On that occasion, Mr. Thirumavalavan, while reiterating that Dr. Ambedkar should not be regarded only as the leader of the Dalits, said that though he and Mr. Athawale were on opposite sides of the political spectrum [Athawale is a BJP ally], they would join forces if there was a threat to the Scheduled Caste population in India.

With many well-known Dalit parties and leaders siding with the BJP since 2014, party sources said the leadership believed that there was a vacuum for a pan-Indian Dalit leadership, and that there was a need to coordinate with Dalit organisations and democratic forces across the country to resist the politics of Hindutva.

VCK Floor Leader in the Tamil Nadu Assembly Sinthanai Selvan said, “Take the case of scholar Anand Teltumbde, who had been arrested unjustly in the 2018 Bhima Koregaon violence case and lodged in jail for more than two years. There is clearly a need to unite like-minded political forces in India.”

Villupuram MP D. Ravikumar said the VCK had functioning units in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.

“Tamils living in Karnataka and Mumbai are calling upon our leader to speak to them. But in Andhra Pradesh, the smaller Dalit organisations have gotten together and formed a party unit there. There is a vacuum for a Dalit movement in Andhra Pradesh. The Telugu-speaking Dalits have joined the party in Andhra Pradesh, while it is the Tamil population in Karnataka and Maharashtra who have been inviting us,” he said.

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Printable version | May 22, 2022 11:48:51 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/thirumavalavan-meets-dpi-office-bearers-in-maharashtra/article65416779.ece