வியாழன், 28 ஜனவரி, 2016

Freedom Fighters of Tamil Nadu

                                              

AMBUJAMMAL

                                      AFFLUENT FREEDOM FIGHTER

         Ambujammal was born on 8 January 1899 to S. Srinivasa Iyengar and his wife Ranganayaki. Srinivasa Iyengar was one of the foremost leaders of the Indian National Congress in the Madras Presidency and had served as the President of the Swaraj Party. Ambujammal's maternal grandfather was Sir V. Bhashyam Aiyangar, the first native Indian to be appointed Advocate-General of the Madras Presidency.
      Ambujammal married S Desikachari in 1910. He was an advocate from Kumbakonam.Early on in her life, she was fascinated by Gandhiji’s ideas, especially his constructive socio-economic program. This interest was fanned by her contact with Sister Subbalakshmi, Dr Muthulakshmi Reddy, and Margaret Cousins.
Ambujammal qualified as a teacher and taught at Sarada Vidyalaya girls school part-time. She was a committee member of Sarada Ladies’ Union from 1929 to 1936. She worked very closely with Sister Subbalakshmi. In 1929, she was nominated Treasurer of the Women’s Swadeshi League, Madras. This League was a non-political wing of the Congress, implementing Gandhi’s social and economic programs.
She joined a number of women who donated their jewelry to support the national movement on Gandhiji’s request. She was a strong proponent of Swadeshi, and embraced Khadi.
Her entry into political life was in 1930, during the civil disobedience movement. She joined the Salt Satyagraha, and courted arrest. In 1932, she was hailed as the "Third Dictator" of the Congress, and led the Satyagrahis to boycott foreign cloth. She was arrested and sentenced to six months of imprisonment.
A thorough Congresswoman, she was part of the Managing Committee of the Hindi Prachar Sabha from 1934 to 1938. She did a lot of propaganda work for Hindi. As part of her activities with the Hindi Prachar Sabha, she attended the All-India Congress Session in Bombay in 1934. She stayed at Wardha Ashram with Gandhi from November 1934 till January 1935.
As part of the role as Secretary of the Mylapore Ladies Club (a post she held from 1936), she conducted Hindi classes.She was a significant part of the Women’s India Association (WIA), taking the post of Secretary from 1939 to 1942 and that of Treasurer from 1939 to 1947. With the WIA, the issues she worked of were: Abolition of Child Marriage, Polygamy, and the Devadasi system; and bringing about legislation to protect the rights of women and their property rights. On behalf of the WIA, she was nominated to the Madras Corporation. In 1947, during the All-India Women’s Conference in Madras, she was nominated as the Chairperson of the reception committee.
      A dedicated social worker, she was the President and Treasurer of the Srinivasa Gandhi Nilayam from 1948, an institute she founded. It provided free coaching to poor girls, had a free dispensary, and also provided training and employment to women in its printing press. An associate of Vinoba Bhave, Ambujammal toured Tamil Nadu with him to publicise the Bhoodan movement in 1956. Ambujammal was not in favour of too much industrialization; she believed in the Village Self-Sufficiency model – as advocated by Bhave.
      She was the Vice-President of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee from 1957 to 1962, and the Chairman of the State Social Welfare Board from 1957 to 1964.Ambujammal was a notable scholar in Hindi and Tamil. She has written three books about Gandhi in Tamil. In 1964 Ambujammal won the padma shri award.
         She died at the age of age of 82 years.


      
                             M.BHAKTAVATSALAM  
                                       FORMER CM OF TAMIL NADU  
                                                                  

        Bhaktavatsalam.M was born on 9 October 1897  to C. N. Kanakasabhapathi Mudaliar of Minjur and Mallika  of  Nazarethpet village, Poonamallee, Chennai. His father died when he was five and Bhaktavatsalam was brought up by his uncles C. N. Muthuranga Mudaliar and C. N. Evalappa Mudaliar. He completed his schooling in Madras and enrolled at Madras Law College. On graduation in 1923, Bhaktavatsalam commenced practice as a lawyer of the Madras High Court
Bhaktavatsalam joined the Indian Independence Movement even during graduation. He joined the Indian National Congress and became a member of the Madras Provincial Congress Committee in 1922. In 1926, he became a member of the Congress Working Committee. 

Bhaktavatsalam started the daily newspaper India which he managed till 1933. He was the Secretary of the Tamil Nadu Congress Civic Board during the district board and municipal elections of 1926 and 1935. He also served as the Secretary of the Madras Mahajana Sabha for sometime.

Bhaktavatsalam was injured during the Salt Satyagraha at Vedaranyam. He was arrested in 1932 for conducting India's independence day celebrations and spent six months in prison. In the 1936 municipal body elections, Bhaktavatsalam was elected to the Madras City Corporation and served as Deputy Mayor.

    Bhaktavatsalam stood in the Madras Assembly elections held in 1937 and was elected from the Thiruvallur Rural constituency. Bhaktavatsalam served as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Local Self-Government in the Rajaji government.  Bhaktavatsalam resigned along with the other office-holders of the Indian National Congress on declaration of war by the British government during 2nd world war .

     Bhaktavatsalam participated in the Quit India Movement agitations and was jailed by the British. On his release in 1944, he elected to the Constituent Assembly of India.

Bhaktavatsalam stood in the Madras Assembly elections held in 1946 and was re-elected. He served as the Minister of Public Works and Information in the O. P. Ramaswamy Reddiyar cabinet. He was a senior minister in Rajaji in 1954 and  K Kamaraj ministry from 1954 to 1963.

In 1962, the Indian National Congress won the assembly elections and formed the government in the state. On Gandhi Jayanti day, 2 October 1963, Bhaktavatsalam took office as the Chief Minister of Madras, after Kamaraj resigned to spend more time as an office bearer of the Congress Party under K Kamaraj plan. Bhaktavatsalam is, till date, the last Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu from the Indian National Congress.

In August 1963, M. S. Golwalkar, the Sarsangchalak of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh established a Swami Vivekananda Centenary Committee and a Vivekananda Rock Memorial Committee and appointed Eknath Ranade as its Secretary. The main function of the committee was to construct a rock memorial at Kanyakumari in order to honour Swami Vivekananda on his birth centenary. The Chief Minister Bhaktavatsam and the Union Minister for Cultural Affairs, Humayun Kabir vehemently opposed the move. However, Bhaktavatsalam yielded when Ranade presented him a letter with signatures of 323 members of Parliament in support of a memorial.

Bhaktavatsalam's tenure as Chief Minister witnessed severe anti-Hindi agitations in Madras state.  Bhaktavatsalam supported the Union Government's decision to introduce Hindi as one of the languages.  On 7 March 1964, at a session of the Madras Legislative Assembly, Bhaktavatsalam recommended the introduction of a three-language formula comprising English, Hindi and Tamil.

As 26 January 1965, the day when the 15-year-long transition period recommended by the Indian Parliament came to an end, neared, the agitations intensified leading to police action and casualties.

On 13 February 1965, Bhaktavatsalam claimed that the opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and the Left parties were responsible for the large scale destruction of public property and violence during the anti-Hindi agitations of 1965

He served as the able chief Minister but was defeated in the 1967 elections. In 1970s Bhaktavatsalam partially retired from politics. He died on 31 January 1987 at the age of 89.


                     CAPTAIN LAKSHMI SAHGAL
    REVOLUTIONARY  CAPTION OF INDIAN NATIONAL ARMY  UNDER NETAJI
      
        Sahgal was born as Lakshmi Swaminathan in Malabar under Madras Presidency on 24 October 1914 to S. Swaminathan, a lawyer who practiced criminal law at Madras High Court, and A.V. Ammukutty, better known as Ammu Swaminathan, a social worker and independence activist from an aristocratic Nair family known as "Vadakkath" family of Anakkara in PalghatKerala.
Sahgal chose to study medicine and received an MBBS degree from Madras Medical College in 1938. A year later, she received her diploma in gynaecology and obstetrics.  She worked as a doctor in the Government Kasturba Gandhi Hospital located at Triplicane,Chennai
In 1940, she left for Singapore after the failure of her marriage with pilot P.K.N. Rao.  During her stay at Singapore, she met some members of Subhas Chandra Bose's Indian National Army.  She established a clinic for the poor, most of whom were migrant  laborers from India. It was at this time that she began to play an active role in the India Independence League.
The INA marched to Burma with the Japanese army in December 1944, but by March 1945, with the tide of war turning against them, the INA leadership decided to beat a retreat before they could enter Imphal. Captain Lakshmi was arrested by the British army in May 1945, remaining in Burma until March 1946, when she was sent to India – at a time when the INA trials in Delhi heightened popular discontent with and hastened the end of colonial rule.
Sahgal married Prem Kumar Sahgal in March 1947 in Lahore. After their marriage, they settled in Kanpur, where she continued with her medical practice and aided the refugees who were arriving in large numbers following the Partition of India. They had two daughters: Subhashini Ali and Anisa Puri.
In 1971, Sahgal joined the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and represented the party in the Rajya Sabha. During the Bangladesh crisis, she organised relief camps and medical aid in Calcutta for refugees who streamed into India from Bangladesh. She was one of the founding members of All India Democratic Women's Association in 1981 and led many of its activities and campaigns. She led a medical team to Bhopal after the gas tragedy in December 1984, worked towards restoring peace in Kanpur following the anti-Sikh riots of 1984 and was arrested for her participation in a campaign against the Miss World competition in Bangalore in 1996. She was still seeing patients regularly at her clinic in Kanpur in 2006, at the age of 92.
The Sahgals' daughter, Subhashini, is a prominent Communist politician and labour activist. According to Ali, Sahgal was an atheist. The filmmaker Shaad Ali is her grandson.

On 19 July 2012, Sehgal suffered a cardiac arrest and died on 23 July 2012 at 11:20 A.M. at the age of 97 at Kanpur..Captain Lakshmi Sehgal International Airport is proposed at Kanpur Dehat district.


PERIYAR E Ve RAMASAMY
REVOLUTIONARY RATIONALIST AND SOCIAL REFORMER

E.V. Ramasamy was born in ErodeMadras Presidency to a wealthy family. in 17, September 1879.
Periyar E V R joined the  Indian National Congress in 1919 after quitting his business and resigning from public posts. He held the chairmanship of Erode Municipality and wholeheartedly undertook constructive programs spreading the use of Khadi, picketing toddy shops, boycotting shops selling foreign cloth, and eradicating Untouchability.
 In 1921, Periyar courted imprisonment for picketing toddy shops in Erode. When his wife as well as his sister joined the agitation, it gained momentum, and the administration was forced to come to a compromise. He was again arrested during the Non - cooperation movement and the temple entrance movement.
 In 1922, periyar was elected the President of theMadras Presidency. Congress Committee during the Thirupur session, where he advocated strongly for reservation in government jobs and education. His attempts were defeated in the Congress party due to a strong presence of discrimination and indifeference, which led to him leaving the party in 1925.
In 1956, despite warnings from P. Kakkan, the President of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee, Periyar organised a procession to the Marina to burn pictures of the Hindu God Rama. Periyar was subsequently arrested and confined to prison.
The activities of Periyar continued when he went to Bangalore in 1958 to participate in the All India Official Language Conference. There he stressed the need to retain English as the Union Official Language instead of Hindi. Five years later, Periyar travelled to North India to advocate the eradication of the caste system. Nearing Periyar's last years, an award was given to him by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), and it was presented to him by the Union Education Minister, Triguna Sen in Madras (Chennai), on 27 June 1970. In his last meeting at Thiagaraya Nagar, Chennai on 19 December 1973, Periyar declared a call for action to gain social equality and a dignified way of life. 
E.V. Ramasamy propagated the principles of rationalismself-respectwomen’s rights and eradication of caste. He opposed theexploitation and marginalisation of the poor people.His work has greatly revolutionised the Tamil society and has significantly removed caste-based discrimination. He is also responsible for bringing new changes to the Tamil alphabet.
          The citation awarded by the UNESCO described E.V. Ramasamy as "the prophet of the new age, the Socrates of South East Asia, father of social reform movement and arch enemy of ignorance, superstitions, meaningless customs and base manners.
On 24 December 1973, Periyar died at the age of 94.
Through this period, Thiru Vi. Ka. continued to remain active in politics and the Indian independence struggle. He was considered to be one of the three pillars of the Indian National Congress in Tamil Nadu, even becoming the President of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee in 1926.[4] He spent much time touring Tamil Nadu, making speeches on the need for independence. He remained active well into his sixties, and did not retire from politics until Indian independence in 1947.

Thiru Vi. Ka. died on 19 September 1953 at the age of 71.


                                                                

                                            GEORGE JOSEPH
                                           LAWYER OF EMINENCE

During the late 1970s and early 80s, subaltern historiography emerged as an alternative to the nationalist, Marxist and colonial historiography, accusing the latter of robbing the common people of their agency. However, within the nationalist historiography there were attempts to marginalise nationalists owing to religious reasons.
One such marginalised figure was George Joseph (1887-1938), who was always seen as a Christian nationalist. A multifaceted personality, he was a famous lawyer, journalist, a trade unionist and a champion of subaltern.
George Joseph remains practically unknown among the freedom fighters of suth India, despite his being in the vanguard of struggle for freedom along with great leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, Motilal Nehru, Rajagopalachari, Jawaharlal Nehru and Mahadev Desai.
Born in Chengannur, Kerala, on June 5, 1887, Joseph had his school education in Kerala and went to the Madras Christian College in 1903. He did M.A. in Philosophy at the University of Edinburgh and went on to study Law at Middle Temple in London in 1908. During his stay in London, he came into contact with several great Indian revolutionaries and freedom fighters of the day. George Joseph, completing his studies, left London in December 1908 and arrived in India in January, 1909.
AGAINST CRIMINAL TRIBES 
George Joseph married Susannah and both went to Madras in 1910. During his short stay in Madras, he contributed to the South Indian Mail, which later became defunct. Later, he, through his friend Gopala Menon, a criminal lawyer, came to Madurai and started his legal practice in 1910.
Within a few years, Joseph, modelling himself on Eardley Norton, a prominent lawyer and one of the founding members of Indian National Congress, established himself as a leading criminal lawyer in Madurai.
He was one of the first members to have vehemently opposed the Criminal Tribes Act (CTA) at a time when even members from the affected communities such as Piramalai Kallars and Maravars did not raise their voice. He fought for their cause in courts, wrote extensively in newspapers and espoused their rights as labourers in the Madura Mill.
Even to this day, members of the Kallar community pay homage to him on his death anniversary and name their children as Rosappoo or Rosappo Durai . Elders in the community say it is not clear whether he was referred to as Rosappoo Durai because he used to wear a rose on the lapel of his jacket or a mispronunciation of Joseph.
Joseph's main contribution was against the punitive powers of CTA, 1911, by which members of the criminal tribes had their fingerprints taken and their mobility restricted. Under Section 10(a) of the Act, hours were fixed for them to report to the police.
In 1919-20, 1,400 Kallars were brought under this Section. The hours fixed were 11 p.m. to 4 a.m., which compelled them to sleep at the police station every day. This made life difficult for the Kallars and the women in the community had no safety. In April, 1920, the Piramalai Kallars rioted in Madurai and a subsequent official enquiry at which George Joseph was present directed that Section 10(a) be applied more sparingly in future.
Representations made by him and others resulted in a more humane approach by the government against these communities. His 1936-diary contains entries regarding visits by delegations of Kallars who had come to him for advice on various issues.
FIRST LABOUR UNION
He played a leading part in setting up one of the early trade unions in India in Madurai. Madurai Labour Union was formed with the help of J. N. Ramanathan of Justice Party and George Joseph in 1918.
Eamon Murphy, in his book, Unions in Conflict: A Comparative Study of Four South Indian Textile Centres, 1918-1939, ' states that Ramanathan's motives for becoming engaged in the labour union are not clear. Although he used labour meetings to criticise the Congress, he was ready to work with individual nationalists such as George Joseph within the union. It was the above said two events which formed the political evolution of George Joseph.
Joseph was introduced to Mahatma Gandhi by Rajaji on March 22, 1919, in Chennai and at once he was mesmerised by the presence and words of the Mahatma. Later, Gandhi came to Madurai on March 26, 1919, and stayed at the residence of Joseph. Joseph played a leading role in organising a public meeting for Gandhi in Madurai on March 29, 1919, in which 20,000 people attended.
They were administered the ‘Satyagraha pledge' as an act of resistance to the Rowlett Act. A resolution was passed at this meeting to the effect that the people of Madurai were fully prepared to observe a hartal on April 6, 1919. On April 5, 1919, Joseph organised a huge procession in Madurai. At the meeting, he appealed to the people to stop work and observe fast the next day. This was translated into rebellious action by a large section of people and all shops remained closed on April 6, 1919. Joseph became the trusted lieutenant of Gandhi in Madurai from that moment.
In the 1920s, he left Madurai to join politics at the national level. In February 1920, Motilal Nehru made Joseph the Editor of ‘The Independent' newspaper in Allahabad. During this time, Joseph was arrested with members of the Nehru family on the charge of sedition on December 6, 1921. On September 27, 1923, he assumed the editorship of Gandhi's ‘Young India' from Rajaji. The tenure lasted for about six months.
RETURN TO SOUTH
As a socially engaged leader, Joseph, after coming to south India, participated in the Vaikkom Temple entry struggle in March 1924, much against Gandhi's dislike. Gandhi wrote a letter on April 6, 1924 stating that temple entry was a problem of the Hindus and let them solve it themselves.
In his words, “I think that you should let the Hindus do the work. It is they who have to purify themselves. You can help by your sympathy and by your pen, but not by organising the movement and certainly not offering Satyagraha.” (Gandhi M.K. (1959) Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi XXIII P.391)
Joseph did not look at the Vaikkom struggle as an isolated movement for temple entry but perceived it as a denial of basic civic right of free entry to public space for the ‘untouchables' and participated in the struggle.
In January, 1925, Joseph and his wife returned to Madurai where they took up Gandhi's constructive programmes, which included promotion of khadi, removal of untouchability and restoration of communal harmony.
From 1925 to 1938, Joseph kept himself in touch with all political activities. In 1929, at the request of the Congress, he contested the municipal elections believing that the Congress would support him. However, he lost the election which made his political isolation complete. Yet, he came back to politics. In July 1937, he was elected to the Central Legislative Assembly from Madura-cum-Ramnad-Tirunelveli constituency.
An avid reader, George Joseph was to be found more often in the Connemara Public Library and Literary Society in Chennai, and on his return to Madurai he renewed his membership at the Victoria Edward Library where he used to spend at least two hours in the evening.
His grandson, George Gheverghese Joseph, in his book George Joseph: The Life and Times of a Kerala Christian Nationalist, 2003, says that print media was the important means to express his views and it was through The Hindu most of his views came to the public sphere. Political and social issues formed the major part of his contributions. Joseph's relationship with Periyar E. V. Ramasamy was a complex one but still he admired him because of his uncompromising stand against the Swarajists and his gutsy approach to stand and fight alone when needed.
He admired B.R. Ambedkar and corresponded with him on Vaikkom struggle and mass conversion. Joseph had a special relationship with Kamaraj. As a youngster, Kamaraj was busy with Joseph in organising demonstrations against Simon Commission and successfully organised thousands of volunteers near Tirumalai Naicker Mahal. When Kamaraj was implicated in the ‘Virudhunagar Conspiracy Case' in 1933, Joseph and Varadarajulu Naidu argued on his behalf and proved the charges to be baseless.
During his later days, Joseph became highly critical of Congress and Gandhi's views and in an article titled “Gandhiji's New Formula in The Hindu , he criticised Gandhi's views on khadi , Salt Act and Prohibition.
Joseph, after prolonged illness, died at the age of 50 at American Mission Hospital in Madurai on March 5, 1938. His requiem mass was held at St. Mary's Church and he was laid to rest at the East Gate Cemetery.
Gandhi, on hearing the news of Joseph's death, wrote to Susannah, “I have before me your most pathetic and humane letter. I have seen your longer and fuller letter to Mahadev Desai. You must not grieve. That will show lack of faith in God. He gives and takes away. And surely it is with Joseph. You will come to me whenever you can and want to. You shall remain a dear daughter and more so, if possible, now that Joseph is no more in our midst in the flesh. Love to you and children — Bapu.”
The Congress government in 1966 erected a statue of him at Yanaikkal junction. It was unveiled by the then Home Minister P. Kakkan.

Thanks to The Hindu




   JANAKI ATHI NAHAPPAN 
MILITANT LADY OF MALAYSIA      

Puan Sri Padma Sri Datin Janaki Athi Nahappan, also known as Janaky Devar (25 February 1925 – 9 May 2014), was a founding member of the Malasysian Indian Congress and one of the earliest women involved in the fight for Malaysian  independence.
Janaki grew up in a well-to-do Tamil family in Malaya and was only 16 when she heard Subhas Chandra Bose's appeal to Indians to give whatever they could for their fight for Indian independence. Immediately she took off her gold earrings and donated them. She was determined to join the women's wing, the Ranl of Jhonsi Regiment of the Indian National Army . There was strong family objection especially from her father. But after much persuasion, her father finally agreed.
She was among the first women to join the Indian National Army organised during the Japanese occupation of Malaya to fight for Indian independence with the Japanese. Having been brought up in luxury, she initially could not adapt to the rigours of army life. However, she gradually got used to military life and her career in the regiment took off. She became second in command of the regiment.
After World War II she emerged as a welfare activist.
Janaki found the Indian National Congress's fight for Indian independence inspiring and joined the Indian Congress Medical Mission in then Malaya. In 1946 Nahappan helped John Thivy to establish the Malyan Indian Congress, which was modelled after the Indian National Congress. The party saw Thivy as its first president. Later in life, she became a senator in the Drwan Negara of the Malaysian Parliament..
        The Government of India awarded her the fourth highest civilian honour of Padma Shri in 2000. She died at her house on 9 May 2014 due to pneumonia.



                                         
JANAKI AMMAL K P   
      ARTIST PATRIOT            



The office of the Communist Party-Marxist was crowded on March 1, not for any routine preparatory meeting for a demonstration, but a memorial gathering to remember K.P. Janaki Ammal, the courageous daughter of Madurai who took on the British and faced many challenges that came her way.
In fact, she was hailed as one of the first women in South India to be arrested by the British. “She was never hesitant to raise her voice for the welfare of the people. And going to the jail was as common for her,” remembers freedom fighter I. Mayandi Bharathi.
As a theatre artiste, freedom fighter, congress worker and later a communist -- the contributions of Janaki Ammal cannot be undermined. Even as a 12-year-old, little Janaki was able to strike a chord with her booming voice during theatre performances. When untouchability was prevalent, Janaki chose to pair with S.S. Viswanathadas on stage, even as many women artistes hesitated to act with him citing his caste.
“ Vetkam Ketta Vellai Kokkukala, viratta viratta vaareegala...,” she would sing to drive home the spirit of the freedom movement. She was first arrested in 1930 while giving a performance in Tirunelveli and served jail for a year.
Born as the only child to Padmanabhan and Lakshmi in 1917, Janaki’s early life was spent in penury. She lost her mother when she was eight and was brought up by her grandmother. As an eighth-grade school drop out, she joined music class. A skilled singer that she was, Janaki Ammal joined Palaniappa Pillai Boys Company for a salary of Rs.25 per month. Later, she went on to become the lead actress and earned over Rs. 300 per performance. Janaki Ammal married Gurusamy Naidu, a harmonium player in the troupe.
Her rising interest in politics and the freedom movement restricted her acting as she began to dedicate her time and money to social service. Janaki spent her fortunes accumulated from theatre earnings for the people. She joined the congress party in 1936 and served as the office bearer of Madurai Congress Committee and always sang patriotic songs in party meetings. Slowly she grew in stature becoming an important speaker and moved to the Congress Socialist party. Inspired by the Communist philosophy, she joined the Communist Party in 1940. In 1967, Janaki was elected to the State Legislative Assembly from the Madurai East constituency.
Many remember Janaki as a gritty fighter. She would raise her fist and take to the streets demanding justice. She led many agitations for regularization of wages for mill workers, farmers and the labour class. “She visited villages on foot gathering people’s support for the cause. Even today, the villagers around Thuvariman, Sholavandan and Thirumangalam areas identify the communist party as ‘Janaki Amma katchi,” says Chellam, councillor, Madurai Corporation.
It was at Ponmalai near Tiruchi, that the feminist in Janaki came to light. She along with Ponmalai Paapa Umanath founded the Tamil Nadu Democratic Women’s Association in 1974 and became its first president. Her speeches on women’s liberation and empowerment and gender equality shaped up new ideals in the minds of people. She was instrumental in introducing women into politics. “Amma inspired many of us to take up positions and responsibilities in the party,” recalls her friend Nagammal.
Janaki was a strict disciplinarian. Yet, her kind-heartedness and motherly love sunk differences between the party functionaries. During the Emergency, Janaki sold all her jewels and silk saris to feed party cadres. “We used to melt the gold and silver zaris of her ‘ thahattu podavai’ (silk saris) and sell them off to make both ends meet,” says Nagammal.
Janaki spent her last days in the party office, then located on Mandayan Asari Street. She was happy with whatever little she had in life. Though her friends offered her gifts, she never accepted. Janaki even declined freedom fighters pension and the ‘ thamarai pattayam’ . Repeated jail terms and hard work deteriorated her health and she died of asthma on March 1, 1992.

--Thanks to The Hindu


       
                                                             K KAMARAJ
                                                  LIGHT OF TAMIL NADU SOCIETY 

Kamaraj was born on 15 July 1903 to Kumarasamy  and Sivakami Ammaiar at Virudhu Nagar in Tamil Nadu. His name was originally Kamatchi, but later changed to Kamarajar as the name sounded feminine. His father Kumarasamy  was a merchant. In 1907, four years after the birth of Kamaraj, his sister Nagammal was born.  At age 5  Kamaraj was admitted to a traditional school and in 1908 he was admitted to Yenadhi Narayana Vidhya Salai. In 1909 Kamaraj was admitted in Virudupatti  High School. Kamaraj's father died when he was six years old and his mother was forced to support her family. In 1914 Kamaraj dropped out of school to support his family.  He worked in his uncle's provision shop.
      During this time he started joining processions and attending public meetings about the Indian Home Rule Movement. Kamaraj developed an interest in prevailing political conditions by reading newspapers daily.
The Jallianwala Bagh massacre was the decisive turning point in his life, and at this point he decided his aim was to fight for national freedom and to bring an end to foreign rule. In 1920, at the age of 18, he became active as a political worker and joined Congress as a full-time worker. In 1921 Kamaraj was organising public meetings at Virudhunagar for Congress leaders. He was eager to meet Gandhi, and when Gandhi visited Madurai on 21 September 1921 Kamaraj attended Gandhi's public meeting and met him for the first time in person. He visited villages carrying Congress propaganda.
In 1922 Congress was boycotting the visit of the Prince of Wales as part of the Non Coperation Movement. He came to Madras and took part in this event.  He participated in the famous Vaikom Sathyagraha led by Sri Narajana Guru against the atrocities of the higher caste Hindus against the Harijans. In 1923–25 Kamaraj participated in the Nagpur Flag Satyagraha. In 1927 Kamaraj started the Sword Satyagraha in Madras and was chosen to lead the Neil Statue Satyagraha, but this was given up later in view of the Simon Commission boycott.  Kamaraj led almost all the agitation and demonstration against British rule.
Kamaraj was first jailed in June 1930 for two years in Alipore Jail, Calcutta, for participation in the "Salt Satyagraha" led by Rajagopalachari at Vedaranyam; he was released early in 1931 in consequence of the  Gandhi - Irwin Pact before he could serve his full term imprisonment.
In 1932 Section 144 was imposed in Madras prohibiting the holding of meetings and organisation of processions against the arrest of Gandhi in Bombay. In Virdhunagar under Kamaraj's leadership processions and demonstrations happened every day. Kamaraj was arrested again in January 1932 and sentenced to 1 year's imprisonment.
In 1933 Kamaraj was falsely implicated in the Virudhunagar bomb case. Dr. Varadarajulu Naidu and George Joseph argued on Kamaraj's behalf and proved the charges to be baseless. 
Kamaraj was conducting a vigorous campaign throughout the State asking people not to contribute to war funds when Sir Arthur Hope the Madras Governor was collecting contributions to funds for the Second World War. In December 1940 he was arrested again at Guntur under the 'Defence of India rules' for speeches opposing contributions to the war fund and sent to Vellore Central Prison while he was on his way to Wardha to get Gandhi's approval for a list of Satyagrahis. While in jail, he was elected as Municipal Councillor of Virudhunagar. He was released 9 months later in Nov 1941 and resigned from this post as he thought he had greater responsibility for the nation.  His principle was "One should not accept any post to which one could not do full justice".
In 1942 Kamaraj attended the All India Congress Committee in Bombay and returned to spread propaganda material for the "Quit India Movement" called by Gandhi. The Police issued orders to all the leaders who attended this Bombay session. Kamaraj did not want to get arrested before he took the message to all district and local leaders. He decided not to go to Madras and decided to cut short his trip; he saw a large number of policemen waiting for the arrest of Congress leaders in Arakonam but managed to escape from the police and went to Ranipet, Tanjore, Trichy and Madurai to inform local leaders about the Programme. He reached Virdhunagar after finishing his work and sent a message to the local police that he was ready to be arrested. He was arrested in August 1942. He was under detention for 3 years and was released in June 1945. This was the last term of his prison life.
Kamaraj was imprisoned six times by the British for his pro-Independence activities, accumulating more than 3,000 days in jail. 
 He was a constituent assembly member from 1946 to 1949. He became the Chief minister of Tamil Nadu  in 1954. He resigned C M post in 1964 voluntarily and became the President of then ruling party of India Indian national Congress in 1964.

          He was defeated in 1967 assembly election. He died in 1975 and was awarded the highest civilian award Bharath Ratna  in 1976. Today people speak Kamaraj rule as a golden period of Tamil Nadu.


          Kalki  T SADASIVAM with wife M SUBBULAKSHMI
                                           WRITER AND ARTIST SCHOLAR PATRIOTS

T. SADASIVAM led a full, rich life for 95 years, a life full of achievements in many fields. He remained steadfast to his ideal of serving the nation and his fellow human beings. He showed unstinting loyalty to his chosen leader, and complete reverence to his spiritual guru. Above all, he did what few men have done - he gave single-minded devotion to his wife, whose genius he recognised, fostered, guarded and presented to the world as a precious gift.
Sadasivam was born to Thiyagarajan and Mangalam on September 4 1902 in Angarai , Tiruchi district.  
 Sadasivam died on November 21, 1997  leaving his spouse of 60 years, legendary Carnatic vocalist M.S. Subbulakshmi, mourning for him with the helpless bewilderment of a child. "Whatever I did in my life and music was guided entirely by him," M.S. said. "What the world calls my achievements are his gifts to me."
From any perspective, Sadasivam's life appears extraordinary. Born in 1902 into an orthodox Brahmin family, the young firebrand quit school to join the freedom struggle. He was initially a sympathiser of the revolutionary stream of the movement, but later adopted Gandhiji's philosophy of ahimsa. He made a dramatic entry into the nationalist movement by running after a horse carriage in which sat the fiery freedom fighter, Subramania Siva. "Will you let me join your Bharat Samaj?" asked the young Sadasivam. When Siva asked if he would give up his life for the country, the answer was an instant, forceful "yes". Recalling those days, Sadasivam would say, "For years I tended Siva and prayed that his leprosy be miraculously transferred to me so that the country could benefit from his leadership."
By 1920, Sadasivam had been drawn into the Civil Disobedience Movement led by C. Rajagopalachari. His musical talent surfaced as he marched from village to village, singing with fervour patriotic songs, especially those of Subramanya Bharati. His emotional singing inspired people to forsake mill cloth imported from Britain and make bonfires of foreign clothes.
Sadasivam's political involvement continued in constructive ways even after India attained independence. His home was where Congress leaders from the north stayed whenever they came to Chennai. He was a personal friend of the Nehru family - three generations of whom have loved M.S. Subbulakshmi music - but that did not prevent him from playing host to non-Congress leaders during the Emergency.
"Sadasivam is to me what Lakshmana was to  Rama," Rajagopalachari once said. The former Governor-General of India and founder of the Swatantra Party was Sadasivam's guru, political and otherwise. Through Kalki in Tamil and Swarajya in English, he made sure the voice of the elder statesman was heard far and wide.
Sadasivam and his friend "Kalki" R. Krishnamurti had left Ananda Vikatan to launch Kalki in 1941, as a nationalist weekly. Krishnamurti, who was its editor, died in 1954. Sadasivam continued to maintain the ideals and standards of the magazine, refusing to make any compromise.
Sadasivam's friendships were life long. It was not only to his social equals whom Sadasivam remained a faithful friend. To the end, he was always assisting the needy and helping those who approached him to secure employment. These were in addition to the enormous contributions to charity (over Rs. 4 crores) he helped Subbulakshmi make out of her earnings through music. When an industrialist friend complained that Sadasivam's candidate for a job was not even a matriculate, pat came the reply. "Neither you nor I finished school. What difference did that make? This man needs the job."
With undimmed zeal he pursued the last goal of his life - raising funds for building a mani mandapam near Kanchipuram to commemorate his spiritual leader, the late Chandrasekharendra Saraswati, the Sankaracharya of Kamakoti Peetham, whom he worshiped as "God on earth".
Sadasivam loved children, with whom he shared his feeling for nature and sense of fun. Succeeding generations of children in the extended family received his undivided attention when he spent time with them, often singing for them nationalist songs in a spirited manner as he recounted the stirring days of his youth.
The story of his marriage to M.S., the films he produced with her in the lead to raise funds for Kalki, and his nurturing of her career until she became a world celebrity has been told many times. Subbulakshmi would often say, "My husband always assured me that if I sang with true feeling, listeners would automatically be drawn to me." He was particular about diction and sometimes suggested the emphasis in the verses she sang. These verses were chosen by him from the devotional and contemplative lyrics of saint poets from every part of India. His own genuine feeling for the raga alapana influenced his wife's music. He had a deep appreciation of the noble teachings of the lyrics, repeating them in the original language and explaining them in Tamil. An example is this lyric from the Guru Granth Sahib - "Krodh na choda, jhoot na choda, satyavachan kyon chod diya" - where the poet admonishes mankind "You have not renounced wrath nor deception - why have you renounced the truth?" He sometimes told his wife to repeat a certain phrase to evoke new levels of poignancy as, for instance, the query in "Marachiti vo, ma Ramana?" (Have you forgotten, O Lord?) in a kriti by Karnataka's H. Yoganarasimham.
To Sadasivam, as to Subbulakshmi, music was a vehicle of communication between human beings and God as also a way of touching a common chord in people from different parts of the country and the world. He planned every concert of Subbulakshmi to the last detail. Songs in different Indian languages were included, but each concert also had compositions appropriate to the occasion and the place. Often he included a lyric with what he considered a vital and relevant message, as in a poem of Bharati that stresses the equality of all human beings irrespective of caste, creed and gender.
Sadasivam began his career in advertising and publicity; while he earned the admiration of professionals in those fields, he used his promotional and public relations skills for far greater purposes than others.
One of the last of the generation of freedom fighters, he withdrew from active political involvement after the death of Rajagopalachari. His concern for the nation and for the individuals who approached him for help remained strong till the end.

Explaining his philosophy, he once said: "I don't believe in building a university after hoarding a huge sum for that purpose. Money corrupts. I would rather do whatever I can every single day to help as many people as I can." He had the complete support of his wife in putting his beliefs into practice. To those who lamented the decline in qualities such as simplicity, austerity, service-mindedness and generosity in post-Independence India, Sadasivam remained a redoubtable torchbearer of the old virtues. For those who came into contact with him his was an influence that caused them to reflect on their own sense of values.


Thanks to Front Line - from the Hindu group.


                                                                       

                                        KOVAI SUBRI WITH WIFE 
                                     POET FREEDOM FIGHTER


         V. R. Krishna Iyer, a leading advocate in Coimbatore and his devout wife Parvathi named their fifth child Subramaniam, after the deity at Chennimalai. The young boy grew up to be better known as Kovai Subri. Subri was drawn to the ideals of Gandhiji and he quit college in order to join the freedom movement.

     In 1921, the town Congress committee was formed and textile pioneer G. Kuppuswamy Naidu officiated as the President and Subri (1898 - 1993) became its Secretary.

    Freedom fighter C. P. Subbiah also joined them and remained a lifelong friend of Subri.

     Subri was imprisoned when he joined the flag Satyagraha at Nagpur under Sardar Vallabhai Patel in 1923 and he spent a year in prison. He was imprisoned on five other occasions and cumulatively spent more than five years of his life in prison.

      It was during his years in prison that Subri composed songs which were later compiled into a book called Desiya Geethangal. He composed Muruga Ganam which consisted of 426 songs classified into 12 volumes.

      He started a khadi centre at Padiyur near Uthukuli and Gandhiji has praised Subri for his stellar role in the freedom movement in the pages of Young India.

       When Gandhiji toured in Coimbatore and Nilgiris district Subri was his translator and he impressed the Mahatma with his stentorian voice. Gandhiji affectionately referred to him as his ‘loud speaker!

         Subri was the Municipal Chairman between 1938 and 1942. It was due to his efforts that Gandhi Park came into being. He was an MLA who represented the Coimbatore City Constituency between 1947 and 1952.

         He married Kamala (1911 - 1993), the young daughter of A. Naatesa Iyer who was an advocate-cum teacher from Pollachi. Subri warned Kamala about the risks involved in marrying a freedom fighter, but they nevertheless got married on the 14 November 1926. Kamala also courted imprisonment in front of the Municipal office for participating in the Salt Satyagraha of 1930 along with their six month old daughter. She was imprisoned again for participating in the Satyagraha in 1932 along with her colleagues Padmavathy Asher (Tirupur), Ambujam Raghavachari, Muthulakshmi (Satyamangalam), Govindammal Ayyamuthu and Kamala Krishnaswamy.

        Subri’s home at 91, Karuppa Gounder Street was always a beehive of activity. He was close to Rajaji, M. P. Sivagnanam, C. Subramaniam, Kalki, Sadasivam, S. N. R. Chinnaswamy Naidu, Kovai Khadar Ayyamuthu, Chinna Annamalai, Dr. C. Nanjapapa, T. A. Ramalingam Chettiar, T. S. Avinashilingam

        Chettiar,T. Raghavachari, R. Venkataswamy Naidu and Rasikamani T. K. Chidambaranathan. Post independence, when Rajaji took the lead to launch a new national party – The Swatantra Party, Subri joined the same.

    G. K. Sundaram described Subri’s life as one of sacrifice, which he gave unstintingly to the nation. He said, “Such men are the salt of the earth”.


Thanks - the Hindu
                                                                               
                                                                                                                   
        
                                                                                                                         
                                                      KUMARAPPA   J C
                                              PERSONAL ASSISTANT OF GANDHIJI

J C Kumarappa was born at Tanjore on 4 January 1892. He belonged to a middle class, orthodox, Christian family of Tamil Nadu. His father, S D Cornelius, was at that time an officer in the Public Works Department of the government of Madras.
His mother, Esther Rajanayakam, was from a devout Christian stock of South India. She had read widely for her generation, especially in Tamil, but was not a learned woman according to the standards of university education. She lived a life of comparative simplicity in consonance with the tenets of Christ. Her piety, her compassion and love for neighbours were reflected in her actions and her eagerness to help those in distress. Her life and her behaviour made a lasting impression on Joseph's mind much more than any book on theology could have done.
As a child Joseph was fond of pets. His mother encour­aged him to breed poultry. When she went to the market at the beginning of every month to get her monthly store, she would take the young lad with her to buy chicken-feed. During the month he would sell eggs and keep accounts. And at the end of the month his mother would ask him to find out what profit had been made out of the sale. This profit had to be made over to her for disbursing it on simple charities, like supporting some orphan child at school. Even when Joseph was a grown up man and was working as a Public Auditor, he had to send her 'tithes' out of his income, on the first of each month. This 'tithe' did not mean a mathematical one-tenth, but a kind of a liberal tax collected by the mother to meet the requirements of her charity budget! Besides some such personal contributions she also goaded her children to go around and collect from their friends too.
While the mother, in this way, contributed largely to the moral and spiritual upbringing, the father also laid a foundation of a good social living. He was a strict disciplinarian, punctual, systematic, and a man of few words. He put the children in the best school available and guided their studies at home. Although an affectionate father, he did not spare the rod when an occasion called for it. Thus, both parents played their part in what they thought -an essential home-training.
Joseph was a bright student at school. From childhood, because of his latent leanings, he was intended for the engineering profession but events led him to accountancy. In 1913 he went to London and qualified himself for an Incorpo­rated Accountant. He lived and worked there for some years and when the First World War was over in 1919, he came back to India, on his mother's persistent request, and set up his practice in Bombay. In the beginning he worked with an English firm but in 1924 separated himself from that firm and started his own under the name of Cornelius and Davar.
In 1927, Joseph decided to go to the U.S.A. for respite, but after a month he joined Syracuse University and took his B.Sc. in Business Administration in 1928. Next year he went to Columbia University to study public finance. His Professor Dr ERA Seligman had seen a press report in The New York Times of a casual lecture which Joseph had delivered in a church on "Why then is India Poor?" Dr. Seligman was so much impressed by this report that he advised Joseph that his Master Degree essay should be on the 'causes of Indian poverty through public finance.' Responding to his Professor's advice Joseph changed his subject and the study of the proposed subject so convinced him of British injustice and exploitation that he became a nationalist. In this process of his change of heart, he took up the original Hindu surname of his family-Kumarappa.
Kumarappa's change in economic perception was gradual and sound. He started viewing it from different angles. In his formative days he was fed on capitalist and pro-imperialist philosophies by the educational institutions of Madras. The whole background of his heyday was city­ centred. This background got a boost up in England. The years of his training in his mother's lap and later at her knees had reinforced in him a moral approach towards humanity, but this was suppressed in the maddening rush and turmoil of London life.
The one and only redeeming spot in this horizon was, that the British in their business relationship, as a rule took care to see that an individual's pursuit did not mar the nation's good. One of the favourite slogans, which the accountant, to whom Kumarappa was articled, constantly repeated was: 'Never make a mistake which will make another man fall.' And in special application, his principal's wife always impressed upon him that in whatever one did, one must consider the social implication of one's action.
Whenever Kumarappa bought anything, she would invariably examine his purchases and offered her criticism. If he had bought anything shoddy, she would immediately say that by buying such defective things we harm ourselves, because we get inferior goods and at the same time we encourage production of undesirable goods by providing a market for them. The fault in such cases lies more with the consumer rather than the producer, for the producer only follows the lead given by the consumer. Besides, inferior goods tend to bring disrepute to the nation's manufacturers.
These and similar lessons helped Kumarappa change his perspective. At Columbia University he took a seminar, entitled 'The Economics of Enterprise.' The Professor of this subject was one Dr H J Davenport. He led a school of thought that no consideration other than individual profits should weigh in economics. The purpose of production, he held, was the increase of purchasing power. To Kumarappa this philosophy seemed wholly wrong, and he fought tooth and nail to assail it. The Professor was liberal enough to assign A-one his performance. And Kumarappa went ahead on his mo lines of thought.
From this time onwards, Kumarappa was pretty clear his mind that man is not merely a wealth-producing agent but essentially a member of the society with political, social, moral and spiritual responsibilities. With this conviction he lost interest in making money and wrote such essays which drew the attention of Mahatma Gandhi, who turned him in a constructive worker. The natural engineering talents of young Joseph bloomed to its full in national reconstruction engineering and the auditor in him developed into an audaciously fearless and unrelenting critic in later life.
In those early days when Kumarappa started working with Gandhi, Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya complimented Gandhi for the wonderful training he had given to Kumarappa. In reply to the compliments Gandhi had said: 'I haven't trained Kumarappa, he came to me readymade.’
That readymade man came to India in 1929 and was anxious to see his study of Indian public finance published. A friend, C H Sopariwala advised him to contact Gandhi.  Thereupon, Kumarappa sought a meeting with him. Pyarelal Gandhi's secretary, telephoned Kumarappa and informed him that he could see Gandhi in Sabarmati Ashram on a certain date. Accordingly, Kumarappa went to the Ashram and was horrified at the sight of the Guest Room. The Guest Room was devoid of all furniture except a charpai. Squatting toilet arrangements made him more eager to get away from it at the earliest moment. His appointment with Gandhi was at 2 p.m. He had ample time to loiter on the banks of Sabarmati. After spending his time here and there, he went to see Gandhi.
On the way up, he saw an old man, sitting under a tree on a neatly cleaned floor, spinning. Kumarappa leaned on his walking stick curiously watching the spinning process. The old man, after about five minutes, opened his toothless mouth and with a smile enquired if he was Kumarappa. It soon dawned upon the visitor that his questioner might not be anyone else than Mahatma Gandhi. In reply he also asked him if he was Gandhi. The old man nodded in affirmation; so Kumarappa promptly sat down on the floor regardless of the crease of his silken trousers. Finding him uncomfortable in his sitting posture, someone brought a chair from the house, but he declined to avail of the courtesy, saying that since Gandhi was seated on the floor he would not like to take the chair.
At the outset Gandhi told Kumarappa that he was interested in the essay written by him and that he wished to publish it, in a series of articles in his weekly magazine the Young India. He also enquired if Kumarappa would under­take a rural survey for him in Gujarat. Kumarappa raised the difficulty of language, but Gandhi quickly brushed it aside, saying that he would place the professors of economics of Gujarat Vidyapith with all their students at Kumarappa's disposal to help him with the survey. He also suggested that he should go and see the Vice-Chancellor of the Gujarat, Vidyapith, Kaka Kalelkar, the person who had come up with a chair for him.
In the afternoon he went to see Kaka Kalelkar. Seeing Kumarappa dressed in the fashionable western style, Kaka Saheb did not feel that Kumarappa would fit into the sort of work Gandhi wanted him to do. Kaka saheb, also, felt that his ignorance of Gujarati language would be a major handicap. So he did not encourage him, quite unintentionally. Kumarappa in a huff returned to Bombay, even without taking leave of Gandhi. From Bombay he wrote to Gandhi that he would be glad to help him with any work, but that Kaka Saheb did not think that he would be of any use. By return of post Kumarappa received a letter from Kaka Saheb saying that he would be most happy if Kumarappa accepted the work that Gandhi wanted him to do.
While Kumarappa started his work, Gandhi set on foot upon his Dandi March. During the course of Gandhi's march Kumarappa's articles on 'Public Finance And Our Poverty' began to appear in Young India. Gandhi wanted them to be put together in the form of a pamphlet and Kumarappa desired that it should bear a foreword from Gandhi. To discuss the matter he invited Kumarappa to meet him at Karadi, where he was camping then.
In his own 'efficient' way Kumarappa had prepared a foreword for him, took it all type-written and ready for him to sign! Gandhi looked at it, smiled and put it aside saying: 'My foreword will be mine and will not be written by Kumarappa.' He said, that he had called him not so much to discuss the writing of the foreword, but to ask if he would regularly write for Young India, incase he and Mahadev Desai were arrested by the Government. Kumarappa told him that he knew 'auditing dusty ledgers' and never ventured to write as a journalist. In reply Gandhi said, 'As regards your qualifications to write, I as editor of the paper have to sit on judgement and not you. It is I that invite you to write for this paper.' Kumarappa in fact, did write for the paper and ultimately landed in jail, not to return to practice as an auditor in Bombay. If at all he went there after his release from the prison, it was to buy his first Khadi dress from Bombay.
In 1930, according to the wishes of Gandhi, Kumarappa took up a detailed economic survey of Matar taluka in Kheda district. In 1931 he experienced his first jail-life in Ahmedabad, when he was sentenced to one year and six months rigorous imprisonment. In March 1931 he came out of jail after the Gandhi-Irwin Pact. At the Karachi Congress, in the same year, Kumarappa was chosen as the convener of a select Committee to go into the details of the financial obligation between Great Britain and India up to that time. When Gandhi, Mahadev Desai and others went to England for the Round Table Conference, Kumarappa had to assume editorship of Young India. This again led him to jail for a second time for his pungent writings inYoung India. This time he was sentenced to two years and six months' rigorous imprisonment.
On his release from jail, a different type of work was waiting for him. In the disaster that swept Bihar owing to the earthquake in 1934, relief work on a large-scale had to be administered. Finding Dr Rajendra Prasad overburdened with that work Gandhi asked Jamnalal Bajaj to go and help him. Jamnalalji, in turn, requested the help of Kumarappa as Financial Adviser. Kumarappa was immediately informed to proceed to Patna. He did his work so well as to earn laurels from Dr Rajendra Prasad who said that Kumarappa's meticulous accounting had really saved the honour of Bihar. From this experience of the relief work, Kumarappa wrote a pamphlet named Organization and Accounts of Relief Work.
Kumarappa was a strict disciplinarian. In Bihar he laid down that three annas would be allowed as the maximum food expense to a relief worker per day. A common kitchen was organised and managed within the prescribed limit.
He made similar rules for the use of motor cars. Once, Gandhi came to Patna to attend a committee meeting of the Relief Fund. His retinue was accustomed to food articles like milk, fruits and vegetables. This went beyond the three anna limit. Kumarappa explained to Mahadevbhai his difficulty in paying these expenses out of the Relief Funds. He also told Mahadev Desai that it will be helpful, if he could make arrangements on his own to get petrol for Gandhi's motor car. The matter reached Gandhi's ears. He called Kumarappa and said that he had come exclusively for the committee's work and wanted to know the grounds on which he refused meeting with his bills. Kumarappa explained the austerity rules he had made to maintain uniformity in spending money obtained as donation from the people and was not in favour of making exceptions. Gandhi got his point. He asked Mahadevbhai not to present the bills to the committee.
On one occasion Gandhi wired to Kumarappa that he was coming to Patna to consult him. He arrived at Patna about 10 p.m. one evening, and asked Rajendra Babu to inform Kumarappa. Rajen Babu told him that there was a difference of a few annas in the Relief Committee's accounts. The Auditors had failed to locate the error. The annual meeting was scheduled on the following day, so Kumarappa had shut himself up in a room, with two young men. He seemed determined to work all night until the error is traced. When he worked like that, he was like a lion and no one could dare disturb him. Gandhi said, 'All right! leave him alone. I shall see him in the morning.' Next day Gandhi saw him and asked for an appointment. Kumarappa replied, not today, but perhaps tomorrow." Gandhi said, "But I am going away tonight to Wardha." Kumarappa told him that in that case he would have to go away without seeing him. Gandhi said, "1 had come all the way from Benaras and you won't give me time?" Kumarappa replied, "But you had not taken an appointment with me. If I were free I would go all the way to Timbuctoo to see you but I am frightfully busy today with the Relief Committee's annual meeting." Gandhi in­structed Mahadevbhai to leave the papers for Kumarappa's perusal. After a fortnight Kumarappa went to Wardha to discuss that matter with Gandhi. This quality had won him the pet name 'Colonel Sahib' in Gandhi's inner circle.
There are many incidents where even big personalities and public leaders were made to conform to the common rule. His daily life was tuned to time and all appointments had to be previously fixed. Strange though it may seem, but even his sisters and brothers were allocated particular time for meeting, whenever they came to see him! There was not a single minute which he could call his own.
On 27 October 1934, the Indian National Congress, passed a resolution to set up an All India Village Industries Association. Kumarappa was made Secretary of the new, association. He was to work under the advice and guidance of Gandhi. Kumarappa read this news in the daily papers in Patna. As his previous consent was not obtained, Kumarappa was perplexed and wrote to Gandhi. In reply to his letter Gandhi, 'I see I made a mistake in not getting your consent... But what is to be done now?... Please, begin the work forgetting the omission of formalities.'
Later, meeting Gandhi, Kumarappa asked, 'Where are the funds and where are the workers?' Then Gandhi laughed and said, 'As for funds, don't bother. You will get whatever is needed. And for workers start yourself as number one.'
In compliance with the resolution of the Congress, Kumarappa plunged into the work of organising and under­took tours throughout the country. Maganwadi in Wardha became the headquarters of All India Village Industries Association and their functions fell into five parts: research, production, training, extension and organisation, arid propa­ganda and publication. All these items of work were taken up in and from Maganwadi. A village Industries Laboratory and a Village Industries Museum were established.
Soon after the setting-up of this organisation, Gandhi wrote in 1934, 'The-Central Board of AIVIA will not be a board of administration, but only a watch tower for the whole of India giving guidance. We want to avoid centralisation of administration, we want centralisation of thought, ideas and scientific knowledge.'
Through this medium of AIVIA Kumarappa had shown that the Constructive Programme devised under the guidance of Mahatma Gandhi, if fully implemented, could give all that Communism was assuring the common man plus to give something more of great value. The Constructive Programme was capable of leading to a human society wherein the values of justice and the values of non-violence were obviously existing. The Village Industries movement had stood for a desirable social ideal. It had become the embodiment of the economics of decentralization, of self-sufficiency and of lasting peace.
When Kumarappa found that the policy of Indian Na­tional Congress in regard to big industries was not very dear, Kumarappa raised the matter with Dr Rajendra Prasad, the then President of the Congress, and sought a clear direction from him.
Then came the question of reorganising of the educational system. The concept was named as Nai Talim. A committee, headed by Dr Zakir Husain, was formed for the proposed reorganisation. Kumarappa served on this committee as a member. In support of Basic Education, Kumarappa propounded his theory of work in two parts: the hard repetitive labour, and the pleasure enjoyment of results.
In 1937 the National Planning Committee was formed. On Jawaharlal Nehru's request Gandhi asked Kumarappa to work on it; but after some time he felt that his time was ill ­spent, so he resigned from the Planning Committee.
Thereafter, the Central Provinces' Government constituted an Industrial Survey Committee under the chairmanship of Kumarappa. Kumarappa assumed this task to show how a national programme for our country's upliftment should be chalked out. Later on he was to take up several such assignments and do his job with mathematical accuracy and perfec­tion. After a similar survey of the North West Frontier Province, Kumarappa received a letter from Sir Mirza Ismail, in which he said, 'I should like to compliment you on the very lucid manner in which you have dealt with the various questions relating to the industrial development of the Prov­ince. You have approached the whole problem in a direct matter-of-fact and eminently practical way.'
In 1942, Kumarappa was again incarcerated for his article, 'Stone For Bread.' He used his seclusion in reading and writing and came out with two books,Practice and Precepts of Jesus, and The Economy of Permanence. When he was released in 1945 he sent these manuscripts to Gandhi. He had not asked for a foreword for either of them. But to his surprise, Gandhi wrote forewords for both these books. He had addressed Kumarappa as D.D., D.V.I. Here D.D meant Doctor of Divinity, and D.V.I. stood for Doctor of Village Industries.
When Kumarappa later met Gandhi, he asked why Gandhi started conferring doctorates on whomsoever he pleased? Gandhi, with a good humoured laugh, said, “Why should you question my authority to confer a doctorate or to coin degrees? Am I not the Chancellor of Gujarat Vidyapith?"
Kumarappa had a clear grasp of what Gandhi wanted to do for rural upliftment. So whenever Kumarappa came forward for rural betterment, they generally met with Gandhi's approval.
In 1946 he formulated an elaborate scheme for rural upliftment. The principles underlying the scheme were self-­reliance, self-sufficiency in food and gainful use of the vast resources of human power. In pursuance of this ideal, he declined an offer for minister ship and the membership of the Congress Working Committee.
In 1948, when Gandhi was assassinated, Kumarappa was so shocked that he lost vision of both his eyes. Fortu­nately he regained his sight after a couple of days.
Soon after the death of Mahatma Gandhi, Kumarappa was called to Delhi by Dr. Rajendra Prasad. It was for consultations in connection with the creation of a Gandhi Memorial Fund. Kumarappa was invited to take charge of this work.
Kumarappa explained to his colleagues that the idea of raising monetary funds was out of place at that time. India had a popular Government and if it so desires it could implement any scheme for Gandhi's memorial. Kumarappa suggested that the Gandhi Memorial Fund should be a unique organization. Therefore the greatest fund that could be raised was a fund of human personality in which men of devotion and detachment should be collected to work for the nation, emanating the light that characterized Gandhi. What is needed for this was an army of men and women imbued with the ideals of non-violence and truth, as taught and expounded by Gandhi, to go forth into the world, express­ing these doctrines, not merely by words, but by their deeds.
He suggested finding one lakh such souls for the fund. To administer this human fund Kumarappa wanted three donors namely, Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Patel and Rajkumari Amrit Kaur. He suggested that these three donors should relinquish their respective offices and devote themselves fully to this cause. He expected Nehru to go to the youth in colleges and universities and collect young men. Similarly Rajkumari was supposed to collect women-folk and Sardar Patel was to concentrate on organizing institu­tions like Vidyapiths designed to train for political states­manship.
These ideas, however, did not find favour with any of them. So Kumarappa returned a disappointed man leaving behind Kripalani to look after the money bag only!
In the post-independence period, Kumarappa traveled on various missions to countries like England, the Soviet Union, Germany, China and Japan. But he had over-exerted himself to the national cause. He was not keeping well now. He, therefore, retired from active public work and settled down in Gandhi Niketan in Madurai district.
Vinoba Bhave, while on his Bhoodan march went  see Kumarappa in 1956.
Kumarappa took Vinobaji into his hut. In the hut was a picture of Mahatma Gandhi. When Vinoba looked at the picture with affection and concentration, Kumarappa broke the silence and said, 'He is my master' and pointing at another one he said, 'And here is my master's master'. That picture was of a poor farmer.
On 30 January 1960 a lady came to see Kumarappa. While taking his leave, she told Kumarappa that she had planned to go and attend the death anniversary meeting of Gandhi. Kumarappa promptly said, "I shall also attend that meeting." The lady was perplexed. How would Kumarappa attend the meeting in such a state of health!
The same evening Kumarappa breathed his last and merged with the soul of his Master.
Thanks to Bombay sarvodaya mandal & Gandhi research foundation.



                                   
                                                    Ma Po SIVAGNANAN
                                   REDEEMER OF THIRUTHANI

Ma.Po.Si was born on 26th of June 1906 of humble parentage in Salvankuppam in Thousand Lights of Madras City, to God –fearing Parents, Ponnuswamy and Sivakami, For long, 
His early education was through his devout mother, and his school term ended at the commencement of Standard III, due to poverty, his father could not buy for him the class text books. Thereafter, the wide world was his school. Sivagnanam was the eldest of the surviving three of his parents’ ten children. Sivagnanam worked on daily wage for some time and later as a weaver for eight years. Subsequently he started life as a compositor in the Pres of a Tamil Journal.
Sivagnanam married Tilottamai, daughter of his maternal uncle in 1927, and after her death six months later, chose to remain single for nine years. He later married Rajeshwari in 1937, and the couple gave birth to a son named Thirunavukkarasu after the Tamil mystic poet Thirunavukkarasar and two daughters named Kannaki and Madhavi after the leading heroines of Silappathikaram, the Tamil Classic chosen by him for his research. 
Serving as a compositor in a Tamil Press eked his lively-hood, he took advantage of the opportunity it gave him to study Tamil books and biographies of great men like Mahatma Gandhi. Sivagnanam earned reputation as an authentic researcher in Tamil Classics, especially Silappadhikaram for which he was conferred the title of ‘Silambu Selvar’.
In fact, he earned his credential as an eminent researcher through his work “Kappalottiya Tamizhan”, on the life of the nationalist and freedom fighter V. O. Chidambaram of the National Steam Navigation Company fame.As a freedom fighter who has faith in national integration wrote a book, Vallalarum Orumaipadum for which the Sahitya Academy awarded a prize of Rs. 5,000. His 1,000 page book entitled My Struggle (Enathu Porattam) is acknowledged as a well-written autobiography for which the Tamil Nadu Government gave a prize of 2,000 in 1981. His magnum opus was on the history of the Freedom Fighter Struggle in Tamil Nadu, published in 1982, for which the State Government presented him a cheque for Rs. One lakh in recognition of his praiseworthy Endeavour.
 Sivagnanam’s political career started when he enrolled himself as a Congress volunteer during the Madras Congress Session in 1927. Since then he was drawn into national movement in its various phases. He participated in the boycott of the Simon Commission in 1928 and had his first baptism of police arrest, lathi charge and imprisonment when he took part in the Salt Satyagraha on Madras Beach in 1930. The news of Gandhiji’s arrest on 4th January 1932 on his return from London ignited the spark of nationalism in Sivagnanam and that marked the beginning of his two decades of active association formally under the banner of national organization. 
Since then he took taken part in all the activities of the Congress with enthusiasm, and this gave him an opportunity to cultivate his oratorical skills by address public meetings. Simultaneously, his association with trade unions also began which brought him in contact with well known trade union leaders like V. V. Giri. Ma.Po.Si went to jail six times as a Congress worker.While undergoing a jail term in Amaravati under hard conditions in 1943 his health suffered a serious setback he narrowly escaped death.He has written in his autobiography that it was when he got a message that his beloved wife was in her death bed, and that on similar crisis, his firm faith in God helped him maintain his mental calm.
Ma.Po.Si was elected as a member of the Madras District Congress Committee in 1936; as a Join Secretary in 1937; as Secretary in 1938 in which post he served till 1946. In 1951 he was elected as Vice-President of the Madras District Congress Committee. 
Sivananm’s interest in Tamil Classics grew and his silent and sustained research on Silapadhikaram progressed. Ma.Po.Si was an enlightened lover of Tamil.. His prime aim was to see that Tamil becomes the medium of instruction at all levels of education and the language of administration in the State.All along in his public life, Ma.Po.Si had managed successfully to evince interest both in politics and literary activities side by side. He has written nearly 120 books big and small in Tamil both political and literary aspects. 
Sivagnanam was also a writer of repute in Tamil. He was the editor of Senkole which became the vehicle of his ideas on matters of political and literary. His style is simple, direct and appealing alike to the common man and the learned scholar. He wielded a facile and versatile pen. He was noted for his sense of humor. Of no robust health, Ma.Po.Si lived long with gastric ulcer, an ailment which started when he was in Amaravati prison. But he never allowed his disability to impede his political and literacy activities. Having started his life in acute poverty and being by non means affluent, he did not allow the lack of material resources to deter him from his work. Recognition came to him unasked, and his work, his dedication to nationalist, literary and cultural causes compelled acknowledgement. 
Ma.Po.Si became an M.L.C in 1952. He later became the Chairman of the Tamil Nadu Legislative Council,having been Deputy Chairman before.Sivagnanam had taken part in the international Tamil Conferences and has visited foreign countries wherever Tamil Speaking people live and flourish.
A review of Ma.Po.Si’s work will be incomplete without a reference to his activities as an Alderman of Madras City Corporation (1948-1954) when he served on the Education Committee. Posterity cannot afford to forget the valuable services rendered by him as Chairman, Local Library Authority, Madras (1954-1957).
As part of this 'Madras Manade' movement, an agitation for separate Andhra Pradesh  was started by freedom fighter Sreeramulu, asking for Madras to be the capital of separated Andhra Pradesh. Ma.Po.Si through his Tamil Arasu Kazhagam agitated against Telugus' claim organising rallies, meetings and dharnas etc., saying தலை கொடுத்தேனும் தலைநகரைக் காப்போம் (We will protect and save the capital for Tamils even if we have to part with our heads). Leaders like C. Rajagopalachari supported Ma.Po.Si.
          Ma.Po.Si went to meet Sreeramulu during his fast, due to the high respect he had on him, amidst political differences.Andhra Kesari Prakasam who was with Sreeramulu told Ma.Po.Si that they want to keep Madras as their temporary capital. Ma.Po.Si denied his request. Ma.Po.Si through his Tamilasrasu Kazhagam held massive protests for want of Madras within Tamil Nadu.He was even prisoned at times for this. Sreeramulu died during a fatal fast,which increased more sympathy towards Andhra's demand.'Madras Manade ' movement attained more momentum. 
Nehru appointed Vansu, a Rajasthan-based justice to look into the Madras issue. Rajaji pressured Nehru saying if Madras was given to Andhra, he will resign from his post. Ma.Po.Si submitted historical,literature facts to Vansu explaining the reason why he claims ThiruthaniThirupathi,Madras to be grouped within Tamil Nadu. In between Nehru got an opportunity to read the famous speech Ma.Po.Si rendered in Madras Corporation. Two thousand telegrams were sent to Nehru from Tamil Nadu, emphasizing the need for Madras within Tamil Nadu. Finally Madras was attached to Tamil Nadu by the great efforts of Ma.Po.SI.But Tirupati only left
His participation in the demarcation of Tamil Nadu has made him an important figure in the state’s history. It was through his efforts the state could retain Madras(now renamed as Chennai) and got Tiruttani from Andhra Pradesh (due to his the namade vs manade agitation) .  
He was an Member of Legislative Assembly elected from T-Nagar Constituency of the City of Madras.He was an indefatigable worker, a scholar, a politician, an inspiring and convincing campaigner and orator, a real nationalist bound by Gandhian ethics, a Journalist with a mission, a writer of number of books and articles, and above all a servant for Tamil Cause. 
Many are the titles conferred on him in recognition of his services. He was awarded Padmashri in 1972. Ma.Po.Si’s association with the University of Madras dates back to 1952. When he was elected to the Senate by legislators of the composite Madras State. Later on, he was nominated twice by the Chancellor of the University of Madras to serve on the Syndicate from 1972 to 1976. He was the unique honor of being invited by the Madras University to deliver the Convocation Address on December 31, 1981.

Silambu Selvar died on October 3rd 1995. A commemorative postage stamp was issued by the Department of Posts on this freedom fighter and Tamil scholar Silambu Selvar M.P. Sivagnanam.

                                                 

                                        MUTHU RAMALINGA THEVAR
                           ORATORDEVOTIONAL NATIONALIST 
Thevar (30 October 1908 - 1963) was born in the village of Pasumpon, Ramnad district. He hailed from a wealthy landlord family. Thevar was the only son of Ukkirapandi Thevar and Indiraniammal.
His mother died before his first birthday and his stepmother the next year. From 1910 onwards he was in the custody of his maternal grandmother Parvathiammal in the neighbouring village of Kallupatti. Parvathiammal was furious on Thevar's father for having taken two new wives shortly after the death of his second wife.
During his youth, Thevar was aided by Kuzhanthaisami Pillai. Pillai was a close family friend of Thevar's father. Pillai took responsibility for arranging Thevar's schooling. First he was given private tuition and in June 1917 he began attending classes at an elementary school run by American missionaries in Kamuthi. Later he joined the Pasumalai High School (near Thirupparankundaram) and then he shifted to the Union Christian High School in Madurai.
Thevar would, however, not complete his studies. In 1924, he missed his final examinations due to an outbreak of a Plaque epidemic. The following year he also missed his chance to attend the final examinations, as he returned to Pasumpon to fight a legal battle over issues of inheritance of family property. The case would linger and was not settled until 1927, when the court ruled in Muthuramalingam Thevar's favour.
Thevar's father, Ukkirapandi Thevar, died on June 6, 1939.
One particular issue would have special impact on Thevar's political career. Since 1920 the criminal Tribes Act had been enacted by the government of the Madras Presidencyand began to be implemented in the Madurai, Ramnad and Tirunelveli districts. After his entry into politics, Thevar began to mobilize resistance to the CTA. He toured villages in the affected areas and led protest rallies for the rights of the individuals registered under the CTA. In 1929 the Maravars of 19 villages in Appanad were forced to registered under the CTA. Thevar led a massive campaign in the villages, urging the people to defy the CTA. The authorities partially withdrew, and reduced the number of CTA registrations in the concerned areas from around 2000 to 341.
In 1934 Thevar organised a convention at Abhiram, which urged the authorities to repeal the CTA. A committee consisting of Thevar, Dr. P. Varadarajulu Naidu, Perumal Thevar, Sasivarna Thevar and Navaneethakrishna Thevar was appointed by the convention to carry on the efforts to persuade the government to revoke the Act.
The CTA was, however, not revoked. On the contrary, its implementation was widened. Thevar again led agitations and awareness-raising campaigns against the Act. At the time the Justice Party was governing the Madras presidency, and their refusal to revoke the law created a strong animosity on Thevar's behalf towards the Justicites.
Infuriated over the attitude of the Justice Party government towards the CTA, Thevar came to the conclusion that the communities affected by the Act had to be mobilized by the Congress. After returning from a trip to Burma in 1936, he began to work to strengthen the Congress in the southern areas of the Presidency. He contested the election to the Ramnad District Board from the Muthukulathur constituency, defeating his Justice Party opponent. This was Thevar's first experience of being a candidate in an election.
After the election Thevar made a bid to be elected the president of the District Board. So did P.S. Kumarasamy, the Raja of Rajapalyam. Conflict erupted within the local Congress organisation over the issue. S. Satyamurthi, on behalf of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee, intervened to preserve the unity of the Congress. Thevar was convinced to withdraw his candidature for president, and presented a motion nominating Kumarasamy as president.
When the Congress Socialist Party began to mobilize in the Madras Presidency in 1936, Thevar joined their ranks.
Ahead of the 1937 elections to the assembly of the Madras Presidency, Thevar enlisted youths from the Mukkulathor communities to work for the Congress. His activities created worries for the Justice Party government, which forbade him to travel outside of the Ramnad district and to make speeches in public.
In February 1937 Thevar contested the assembly election himself, as a candidate in the Ramanathapuram constituency. He had a powerful opponent, the Raja of Ramnad. However, Thevar won a landslide victory with 11 942 votes against 6 057 for the Raja.
Following the election the Congress formed a government in the Presidency. Thevar had high hopes that the new Congress ministry would revoke the Criminal Tribes Act. But the new Chief minister, C. Rajagopalachari, did not fulfil those hopes.
During the late 1930s, Thevar he got increasingly involved in labour activities. He formed and led the Pasumalai Mahalaskshmi Mill Workers' Union, the Meenakshi Mill Workers' Union and the Madura Knitting Company Labour Union. During a prolonged strike of the Pasumalai Mahalaskshmi Mill Workers' Union, demanding the reinstatement of a section of fired trade unionists, Thevar was jailed for seven months from October 15, 1938. In the end, the management of the Mahalakshmi Mills accepted the demands of the union. In the same period a strike was led by Thevar at the Madura Knitting Company.
In 1945, he would become the founding president of the TVS Thozhaili Sangam.
Thevar attended the 52nd annual session of the Indian National Congress, held in Tripuri in March 1939. At this meeting the presidency of Subhas Chandra Bose was challenged by Pattabhi Sitaramayya. Sitaramayya had the active support of Gandhi. Bose was re-elected as the Congress President. Thevar strongly supported Bose in the intra-Congress dispute.Thevar mobilised all south India votes for Bose.
However, due to the manoeuvrings of the Gandhi-led clique in the Congress Working Committee, Bose found himself forced to resign from the Congress Presidency. He then launched the Forward Bloc on June 22, calling for the unification of all leftwing elements into a united organisation within the Congress. Thevar, who was disillusioned by the official Congress leadership which had not revoked the CTA, joined the Forward Bloc. When Bose visited Madurai on September 6, Thevar organised a massive rally as his reception.
The growing popularity in Thevar as a leader of elements opposing the official Congress leadership in Tamil Nadu troubled the Congress-led government. Thevar was also increasingly associated with labour militancy. A criminal case, the so-called Madura Security Case, was proceeded against him. He was banned from leaving Madurai. When travelling to his birthplace, Pasumpon, in September 1940 he was apprehended and jailed for 18 months at the Central Jail in Tiruchirapalli. His capture sparked wide condemnation in Tamil Nadu.
Soon after his release he was arrested again under the Defense of India Rules. He was released from prison on September 5, 1945.
In 1945 C. Rajagopalachari tried to make a comeback within the Congress organisation in Tamil Nadu. He had the support of Gandhi and Sardar Patel, but the majority of in the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee opposed him. A conference was held in Tirupparankundram, in which the leadership should be elected. Chaos broke about during the conference, as warring factions confronted each other. Thevar interrupted the disputes and passed a motion reelecting Kamaraj as the TNCC President.
Elections to the assembly of the Madras Presidency were again held in March 1946. Thevar contested from the Mudukulathur constituency, and was elected unopposed. Soon thereafter, the CTA was repealed.
In February 1948 the Congress expelled all dissenting fractions, including the Forward Bloc. The Forward Bloc became an independent opposition party, and Thevar became its president of its Tamil Nadu state unit (a position he would hold for the rest of his life).
On January 23, 1949, in connection with birthday anniversary celebrations of Subhas Chandra Bose, Thevar publicly announced that Bose was alive and that he had met him. Soon thereafter Thevar disappeared without any explanation. He returned to public life in October 1950. Rumours claimed that he had travelled to Korea and China during this period.
In January 1952 the first general elections in independent India were held. The Forward Bloc contested with the aim of forming non-Congress governments at the Centre as well as in the states. Election were held simultaneously to the Lok Sabha as well as to the legislative assemblies of the states. Thevar contested the Aruppukottai constituency in the Lok Sabha election and the Mudukulathur constituency in the assembly election. He won in both cases. After the election, he decided to vacate his Lok Sabha seat and concentrate his efforts to the Madras legislative assembly.
After the election, Congress lacked a majority of its own in the Madras legislative assembly. Thevar cooperated with the communists in trying to form a non-Congress governing coalition. However, the governor intervened and made C. Rajagopalachari of the Congress the Chief Minister.
In December 1955 Thevar travelled to Burma for the second time, during which he took part in political and religious activities organised by the All Burma Tamil Nadu Association. He returned on February 18, 1956 and began to prepare for the coming general election.
A new dynamic in the efforts to build a non-Congress front had emerged in the Madras State(which had been reorganised in 1956). The Congress had been divided and C. Rajagopalachari had formed a new party, the Congress Reform Committee (CRC).
In the election Thevar again contested both the Aruppukottai constituency in the Lok Sabha election and the Mudukulathur constituency in the assembly election. He won both seats, but this time he decided to vacate the assembly seat.
A by-election was held in the Mudukulathur assembly constituency on July 1, 1957, as Thevar had resigned from his assembly seat. The election was won by D.V. Sasivarna Thevar of the Forward Bloc. The situation in the area was tense on the day that the results were released, and there was a sizeable presence of police forces in place. Clashes between Maravars, who largely supported the Forward Bloc, and pro-Congress Devendrars began in a few villages soon after the election result was acknowledged. Gradually the violence spread to more and more villages, and by August the riots had spread throughout the entire district. Several persons were killed and thousands of houses were torched.
Thevar himself travelled to Delhi on July 17 to attend the session of the Lok Sabha. He returned on September 9. On September 10 he took part in a 'Peace Conference' together with T. V. Sasivarna Thevar and Velu Kudumban (legislative assembly member of the Forward Bloc from devendrar community). From the Congress side six Devendrars took part. There was also a delegate from the Nadar caste. The conference concluded that the three castes should live in harmony.
Emmanuel Sekaran, the member of the Congress at the Peace Conference was killed the following day. On September 28, a few days after the clashes had ceased, Thevar was arrested by the police under the Preventive Detention Act. Thevar's was apprehended directly after holding a speech at the conference of the Indian National Democratic Congress (the new name taken by the Congress Reform Committee). Thevar was taken to the Jail. Pudukkottai court was hearing that case. He was later accused of having masterminded the murder of Emmanuel sekaran.
The Forward Bloc and its allies condemned Thevar's arrest as a political vendetta, engineered by the Congress. A 'Thevar Committee' was step up by the INDC. Thevar was acquitted of all charges and released in January 1959.
After being released from prison Thevar began mobilising for the Madurai municipal elections, held in March 1959. An alliance of the Forward Bloc, Communist Party of India, Indian National Democratic Congress and Dravuda Munnetra Kazhagam was formed. The alliance won the elections, and for the first time Congress lost its hold over the city administration.
Following the election, Thevar's health deteriorated and he largely withdrew from public life. He was nominated for the 1962 Lok Sabha election. However he only attended a single campaign meeting, which also was attended by C. Rajagopalachari (who now had merged with his INDC with the Swantatra Party). Thevar was reelected, but due to health reasons he was unable to travel to the parliament in Delhi. U. Muthuramalingam Thevar, died on October 30, 1963, on his 55th birthday. A by-election for the Aruppukottai Lok Sabha constituency seat vacated by his death was held in 1964, in which the Forward Bloc was defeated for the first time.
The pillars of Thevar's political thought were spiritualismnationalismanti-communism, and anti-imperialism.

                                 
                          MUTHURANGA MUDALIAR C N
                                           GREAT ORGANIZER

C. N. Muthuranga Mudaliar (1888 - February 2, 1949) was an Indian politician and Indian independence activist who served as a member of the Central Legislative Assembly He was elected President of the Tamil Nadu Congress on January 16, 1938. Mudaliar was the paternal uncle of Indian politician, M. Bhaktavatsalam. His native place is  Pettai, near Poonthamallee. His statue has been installed there. 
C.N. Muthuranga Mudaliar, was the  Chairman of the reception Committee of the 42nd session of Indian National Congress which was held at Madras 1927. He said  "The organisation of  labour is  a vital matter. The Congress must stand fearlessly and wholeheartedly by the labouring population, industrial and agricultural. The Congress must co-operate with the All-India Trade Union Congress and help it to secure human conditions for India's labour. By enlisting their active assistance, the cause of swaraj could be tremendously advanced.".
The reception commitee reported at the successful completion of Congress open session as follows"In conclusion, the Reception Committee feel bound to thank the people of the Tamil Nadu who so nobly and patriotically responded to the all of the Congress, the Volunteers, the members of various Sub~Committee , the different contractors and many other friends everyone of whom took the cause as his or her own, and cooperated with the Committee in every possible manner and made the All India Congress session a grand success not only from the point of view of the arrangements made, but from the point of view of the epoch making resolutions passed by the Congress."




V.RAMALINGAM PILLAI
 TAMIL POET 

Venkatarama Ramalingam Pillai (Tamil: வேங்கடராம ராமலிங்கம் பிள்ளை) shortly V. Ramalingam Pillai (October 19, 1888 - August 24, 1972) was a Tamil poet from Tamil Nadu, India and independence fighter. He is well known for his poems about independence.
The poem "கத்தியின்றி ரத்தமின்றி யுத்தமொன்று வருகுது சத்தியத்தின் நித்தியத்தை நம்பும்யாரும் சேருவீர்..." was very famous among freedom fighters.
Namakkal Kavignar V. Ramalingam Pillai, popularly known as Namakkal Kavignar, was born on 19th October, 1888 at Mohanur, a small hamlet on the banks of Cavvery river in Salem District. 
His father was a head constable of Mohanur and his mother was a pious lady from Salem. The family had seven daughter before Ramalingam was born. He was, therefore, regarded as a gift of God. Ramalngam had his primary education at Namakal in Tamil Nadu, and high school education at a mission school at Coimbatore. He did his FA in 1909, from Bishop Heber College at Tiruchirapalli. 
His father desired Ramalingam to become a sub-inspector and later forced him into the jobs of a clerk, at the Namakkal Tahasildar's office, and of a school teacher both of which Ramalingam disliked. He subsequently took up his profession of portrait painter and photographer in which he excelled and his lifelike portraits of the wealthy chettiars of Chettinad. 
In the 1911 Delhi Darbar, Ramalingam presented his portraits of King George V and the Queen and was honoured with a gold medal. Inspired by Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Aurobindo, Ramalingam entered plitics as an extremist but later become an ardent follower of Mahatma Gandhi. As a boy, he had a taste for poetry and wrote songs for operas. 
        During the freedom struggle, he not only became a veteran Congress Leadeer of Namakkal and Trichy during 1920's, but also wrote a hundred poems with patriotic favour named 'Nathu Kummi'. During the 1930 Salt Satyagraha, the Satyagrahis led by Shri Rajagopalachari marched from Tiruchi to Vedaranyam, singing a song composed by Ramalingam. The song won him fame as a patriotic, Gandhian poet. In 1932, he was jailed for one year for his participation in the Salt Satyagraha. 
Ramalingam also wrote novels, the more prominent of which, titled 'Malaikallan' was filmed in five languages and won the Prsident's medal in 1954. His commentary on 'Thirukkural' is regarded as his magnum opus. He composed more than 500 poems of which a vast majority reflected the ideas of Gandhiji - Ahimsa, Satya, Satyagraha, rural idustries, removal of untouchability and the equality of the sexes. 
For his literary contributions, Madras Government nomnaed him as Poet Laureate or 'Asthana Kavignar' in 1949. In 1953, he was nominated to the Sahitya Akademi. In 1956 and 1962, Namakkal Kavignar was nominated as MLC by the Madras Government. The Government of India awarded him the "Padmabhushan" in 1971. Towards the fag end of his life, he was almost croppled by an attack of rheumatism. He died of a heart attack on 24th August, 1972.



       

P. KAKKANJI            
  LEADER OF SIMPLICITY               
                                                     
P. Kakkan, a man of austerity
The Indian independence movement brought to fore great souls who were selfless and honest. While many of them resigned back to peace after independence, others ventured into politics. Not to make money or name for themselves, but to provide a better life for the suffering and the unprivileged. Though a few of them are still remembered today, most of them have been wiped off from the pages of history. One such man is P. Kakkan.
Personal life:
Kakkanji was born into a Dalit family on 18 June 1908 in a small village called Thumbaipatti near Madurai. He did his primary schooling in Melur - the town closest to his village - before moving to Thirumangalam or Madurai(there is some confusion over where he studied) for higher secondary education. He seemed to have failed the SSLC exam and thereafter, worked as a teacher before becoming a social worker. He was married to Parvati with whom he fathered five sons and a daughter. He was deeply religious and rejected Periyar's ideologies and methods.
Life as a freedom fighter:
      Inspired by Gandhi, Kakkanji joined the Congress in his student days. Along with Kamaraj, he led several protests against the British in the 30's and the 40's. He also participated in the Quit India movement and was jailed in Alipore for a while.
Life as a social worker:
        Kakkanji fought all his life for the unprivileged against untouchability.

In 1939, along with four other Dalit men and a Nadar, Kakkan entered the Meenakshiamman temple in Madurai where entry was prohibited to Dalits and Nadars. This acted as a forerunner to the state legislation that was conferred upon the socially backward sections of Hindu society later that year. The legislation included "Temple Entry Authorisation and Indemnity Act, 1939" which removed the civil and social disabilities against the depressed classes.

 In some of the Indian villages, even today, people from the scheduled caste are not allowed to drink from the "drinking pond" in the village, instead they drink from a "bathing pond" where men and women from higher castes and cattle bathe. Kakkan staged many protests across Tamil Nadu against this tradition.  Kakkan was also a strong proponent of reservation in appointments, especially in police and military services.
Life as a politician:
       Kakkanji served as a minister for two terms in the Congress government of Tamil Nadu between 1957 and 1967.  As a Public works minister, Kakkan played an important role in the expansion of mettur and vaigai reservoirs. Both the dams were strengthened during his reign.  As a minister for Harijan/SC/ST welfare, he formed a Harijana seva sangham for the welfare and upliftment of the suppressed.  As a minister for Agriculture, he established two agricultural colleges in Tamil Nadu.
Symbol of austerity:
        In 1962, when Kamaraj was collecting funds for the Sino-Indian War, Kakkan donated his brother's gold chain which was awarded to him by Jawaharlal Nehru for winning a medal in an athletic meet. After losing the assembly elections in 1967, Kakkan retired from politics and resigned himself to a simple life. He did not amass any wealth and always travelled by bus till his death. He did not have any property in his name.

Till his last days he lived in a rented house in Chennai.

Thanks to Ilavaluthy M at this is my world


   
                                          KUMARASAMY RAJA  P S
                                            FORMER CM OF TAMIL NADU

Sri. P.S Kumaraswami Raja was born in 1898 at Rajapalayam. He belonged to the community of Rajas ( kshatriya Rajus) , Whose ancestors migrated from the northern circas in Andrapradesh more than four centuries ago.
 His father is Sri. Poosapati Sanjeevi Raja.  His mother expired when he was eight days old.  He lost his father when he was three years old.   Raja had no brother and sister.  Brought up by his grand mother. 
He Studied FORM-III,  in an Anglo-Vernacular School.  In 1912 he married at his age of 14. Joined in high school at Srivilliputur in 1913.   Newspapers and journals engaged him more than his class text books.   He stopped his studies on 1919.
 After Schooling Raja was connected with the congress organisation at its every level. He was taking a prominent part in Panchayat organisations, Local board administration He was president of Rajapalayam union, Panchayat court, District  board of Ramnathapuram, District eductional council etc.
 1932 He was arrested for disobeying the unjust laws. Thus Rajapalayam gained a distinct place in political map, the credit went to Raja's lead. In 1934, Raja won central legislature for constituency comprising Thirunelveli,  Madurai & Ramanathapuram.  In 1936 he was M.L.A., in Sri. Rajaji ministry.
In 1938 Raja was the chairman of reception committee for Fortieth Tamil Nadu political conference,  it disclosed the magnificent organising capacity & outstanding leadership qualities.
          In all the years of his life, most of Raja's wealth has been spend in his help to poor and in service to the public cause,  particularly for the Congress movement.
          Raja's huge residential building and some landed property, what remained with him were finally donated to GANDHI KALAI MANDRAM by him.
 P.A.C. Ramasamy Raja, founder of Ramco Group of Industries was his close associate since his childhood.  Sri T.T. Krishnamachari was a close friend of Raja. Raja was tall, well built and of a fair complexion. He knew the straight way and spoke in a blunt manner.  Beneath all this, he had a very soft and genial heart.  His nobility was admirable.  He walked as a giant among men.  Whether he marched to the jail or moved in the secretariate as Chief Minister of Madras.
In April, 1946 in Sri T. Prakasam's ministry, Raja was the minister in-charge of Agriculture and its kindred portfolios. 
In April, 1949 Raja became  the Chief Minister of the Madras Presidency (1949 to 1952  )
Raja laid down his charge of CM office on 10-4-1952 to Sri. C. Rajagopalachari.
In 1954 January, the Governorship of Orissa was offered.
12-09-1956 He made over the charge of Governorship to his successor.
On 15-03-1957, the noble soul left for the place where from it came.

                                                                              
                        
                                       RAMASAMY REDDIAR O P
                                               FORMER CM OF TAMIL NADU

 Omandur Ramaswamy Reddiar was born in 1895 in the village of Omandur near Tindivanam in the then South Arcot district of Madras Presidency. He belonged to a Telugu Reddy family domiciled in the Tamil country. He had his schooling at Walter Scudder School and entered the Indian independence movement at an early age.
Omandur Ramasamy Reddiar was the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu from March 23, 1947 to April 6, 1949. He belonged to Viluppuram district in Tamil Nadu. He was nominated by K. Kamaraj for the CM position. When he showed signs of independence, Kamaraj engineered his removal through a vote of no-confidence in the congress legislature party in 1949 and replaced him with P S Kumaraswamy Raja another ethnic telugu from  Rajapalayam ,southern Tamil Nadu.
During his tenure, the Madras Temple Entry Authorization Act 1947 was passed This act was intended to give Dalits and other prohibited Hindus full and complete rights to enter Hindu temples.This was approved by the Governor on May 11, 1947 and passed as Madras Act 5 of 1947.The Devadasi Dedication Abolition Act of 1947 put an end to the devadasi system that was in vogue in many Hindu temples. 
It was during Reddiyar’s tenure that India achieved independence from the United Kingdom. Soon after independence and partition of India, there was a shortage of food grains, especially rice, in the province.In 1948, Reddiyar ordered the purchase of a de Havilland Dove, the first aeroplane to be owned by the Government of Madras.
Ramaswamy Reddiar was a devotee of Sri Ramana Maharshi. It was believed that O.P. Ramaswamy Reddiar was not interested in the Chief Minister post, when he was asked to assume the office; since huge pressure was mounting on him to take sworn as CM, he vanished from Madras ,capital of Tamil Nadu before renamed as Chennai.  
       He silently went to thiruvannamalai to meet Ramana Maharishi and explained what is happening and  asked what he should do? It is believed that only after Ramana Maharishi’s consent O.P. Ramaswamy Reddiar sworn has Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.
                                                        

                                                 SIVA SAMY IYAR P S
                                                         ADMINISTRATOR    
    
 Sivasawamy Iyar (7 February 1864 - 5 November 1946) was a prominent lawyer, administrator and statesman who served as the Advocate General of Madras from 1907 to 1911.
Sivaswami Iyer was also active in the Indian independence movement and presented India's case before the League of Nations. He was a keen connoisseur of arts and library science.
Sivaswami Iyer was born to Sundaram Iyer and Subbalakshmi in the village of Palamaneri on 7 February 1864. He belonged to the Palamaneri Brahacharanams who traced their descent from Krishnan Raman Brahmarayar, the commander-in-chief of the Chola army under Rajendra Chola.
Sivaswami had his schooling at the S. P. G. Branch School and the Manambuchavadi High School from where he matriculated with a first class in 1877. Sivaswami did his F. A. at the Government Arts College, Kumbakonam and graduated from Presidency College, Madras in January 1882, with a first class in Sanskrit and History.  He studied law from Madras Law College and set up practice as a lawyer in 1885.
         Sivaswami Iyer set up a successful practice as lawyer and on 12 May 1904, was nominated to the Governor's Executive Council as Additional member in charge of making rules and regulations. Sivaswami Iyer served as member of the Madras Legislative Council from 1904 to 25 October 1907, when he was appointed Advocate-General of Madras Presidency.
Sivaswami Iyer was elected to the senate of the Madras University in 1898 and served as Vice Chancellor of the Madras University from 1916 to 1918. From 13 April 1918 to 8 May 1919, he served as the Vice Chancellor of Banaras Hindu University.
Sivaswami Iyer entered politics in 1912 when he was appointed member of the Executive Council of the Governor of Madras as per the Minto Morley scheme and served from 1912 to 1917.  During the First World War, he was instrumental in raising support for the Indian Volunteer Movement in order to provide support to the United Kingdom. His moderate views and weak opposition to Government policies including the widely condemned internment of Annie Besant during his tenure as member of the executive council earned him the displeasure of Indian nationalists. However, in 1919, Sivaswami Iyer expressed strong condemnation of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre.
Sivaswami Iyer was the Indian delegate to the third session of the League of Nations in 1922 in which, he condemned the mandate policy of General Smuts of the Republic of South Africa. Sivaswami Iyer served as a member of the Council of State from 1922 to 1923. He also opposed the Simon Commission on its arrival in India.
Sivaswami Iyer served as a member of the Imperial Legislative Assembly, in which he spoke often on military matters
In 1931, he was appointed member of the new Indian Military College Committee. During his later years, he expressed strong disapproval of any attempt to partition the subcontinent.

Sivaswami Iyer died in his Madras home on 5 November 1946 at the age of 82. On his death, the Lady Sivaswami Iyer girls school was named after him in his memory.



         
                                                   
                                                          RAJAJI. C 
             FORMER GOVERNOR GENERAL OF INDIA AND CM  OF T N

        He was informally called Rajaji or C.R., was an Indian lawyer, Indian independence activist, politician, writer, statesman and leader of the Indian National Congress who served as the last Governor-General of India. He served as the Chief Minister or Premier of the Madras Presidency, Governor of West Bengal, Minister for Home Affairs of the Indian Union and Chief Minister of Madras state. He was the founder of the Swatantra Party and the first recipient of India's highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna. Rajaji vehemently opposed the usage of nuclear weapons and was a proponent of world peace and disarmament. He was also nicknamed the Mango of Salem.
Rajagopalachari was born in Thorapalli on December in the then Salem district and was educated in Central College, Bangalore and Presidency College, Madras. In 1900 he started a prosperous legal practise. He entered politics and was a member and later President of Salem municipality. He joined the Indian National Congress and participated in the agitations against the Rowlatt Act, the Non-Cooperation movement, the Vaikom Satyagraha and the Civil Disobedience movement.
 In 1930, he led the Vedaranyam Salt Satyagraha in response to the Dandi March and courted imprisonment. In 1937, Rajaji was elected Chief Minister or Premier of Madras Presidency and served till 1940, when he resigned due to Britain's declaration of war against Germany. He advocated cooperation over Britain's war effort and opposed the Quit India Movement. He favoured talks with Jinnah and the Muslim League and proposed what later came to be known as the "C. R. Formula". In 1946, he was appointed Minister of Industry, Supply, Education and Finance in the interim government.
          He served as the Governor of West Bengal from 1947 to 1948, Governor-General of India from 1948 to 1950, Union Home Minister from 1951 to 1952 and the Chief Minister of Madras state from 1952 to 1954. 
He resigned from the Indian National Congress and founded the Swatantra Party, which fought against the Congress in the 1962, 1967 and 1972 elections. Rajaji was instrumental in setting up a united Anti-Congress front in Madras state. This front under C. N. Annadurai captured power in the 1967 elections.
Rajaji was an accomplished writer and made lasting contributions to Indian English literature. He is also credited with composition of the song Kurai Onrum Illai set in Carnatic music. He pioneered temperance and temple entry movements in India and advocated Dalit upliftment. Rajaji has been criticized for introducing the compulsory study of Hindi and the Hereditary Education Policy in Tamil Nadu. Critics have often attributed his pre-eminence in politics to his being a favorite of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru. Rajaji was described by Gandhi as the "keeper of my conscience".
Rajagopalachari was born to Chakravarti Venkatarya Iyengar and Singaramma on 10 December 1878 in a devout Vadagalai Iyengar family of Thorapalli in the Madras Presidency. Chakravarti Iyengar was the munsiff of Thorapalli.He was the third and youngest of the couple's three children, all sons, the elder being Narasimhachari and Srinivasa.According to popular folkore, while Rajaji was a child, an astrologer told his parents that he would have the "fortunes of a king, a guru, an exile and an outcaste. The people will worship him; they will also reject him. He will sit on an emperor's throne; he will live in a poor man's hut."
Rajaji was a weak and sickly child and was the subject of constant worry to his parents who feared that he might not live long. As a young child, Rajaji was admitted to a village school in Thorapalli. When Rajaji was five, the family moved Hosur where Rajaji enrolled at Hosur Government School.Rajaji passed his matriculation examinations in 1891 and graduated in arts from Central College, Bangalore in 1894.He also studied law at the Presidency College, Madras, completing his graduation in 1897.
Indian Independence Movement:
Rajaji's interest in public affairs and politics began when he commmenced his legal practice in Salem in the year 1900. In the early 1900s, he was inspired by Indian radical Bal Gangadhar Tilak. Rajaji became a member of the Salem municipality in 1911. In 1917, Rajaji was elected Chairman of the municipality and served from 1917 to 1919.As Chairman of the Salem municipality, he was responsible for the election of the first Dalit member of the Salem municipality. Rajaji joined the Indian National Congress and participated as a delegate in the 1906 Calcutta session and the 1907 Surat session.In 1908, he defended Indian freedom fighter P. Varadarajulu Naidu from the charges of sedition levelled against him. He participated in the agitations against the Rowlatt Act in 1919.Rajaji was a close friend of V. O. Chidambaram Pillai. He was also highly admired by Indian independence activists Annie Besant and C. Vijayaraghavachariar.
When Mahatma Gandhi entered the Indian independence movement in 1919, Rajaji became one of his followers. He participated in the Non-Cooperation movement and gave up his profession as a lawyer. In 1921, he was elected to the Congress Working Committee and served as the General Secretary of the party. His first major breakthrough as a leader was the 1922 Gaya session of the Indian National Congress in which he strongly opposed council-entry.In the absence of Gandhi who was in prison, Rajaji lead the group of "No-Changers" or those who were against council-entry against "Pro-changers" or those who advocated council entry.When the motion was put to vote, the "No-changers" won by 1748 to 890 votes resulting in the resignation of important Congress leaders including Pandit Motilal Nehru and C. R. Das, the President of the Indian National Congress.When the Indian National Congress split in 1923, Rajaji was a member of the Civil Disobedience Enquiry Committee.
Rajaji was one of Gandhi's chief lieutenants during the Vaikom Satyagraha. It was during this time, that E. V. Ramasamy functioned as a Congress member under Rajaji's leadership. The two later became close friends and remained so till the end despite their political rivalry.
In the early 1930s, Rajaji emerged as one of the foremost leaders of the Tamil Nadu Congress. When Mahatma Gandhi organized the Dandi march in 1930, Rajaji broke the salt laws at Vedaranyam near Nagapattinam along with Sardar Vedaratnam and suffered imprisonment. Rajaji was subsequently elected President of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee.When the Government of India Act was enacted in 1935, Rajaji was instrumental in getting the Indian National Congress to participate in the general elections.
The Indian National Congress was elected to power in 1937 election for the first time in Madras Presidency (also called Madras Province), a province of British India; with the exception of the six years when Madras was in a state of Emergency, ruled the Presidency until India became independent on 15 August 1947.Rajagopalachari was the first Chief Minister of Madras Presidency from the Congress party.
In Nehru's Cabinet:
In 1950 Rajaji joined the Union Cabinet as Minister without Porfolio, at Nehru's invitation.In the Union Cabinet, Rajaji served as a buffer between Nehru and Home Minister Patel and occasionally, offered to mediate between the two. Finally, with Patel's death on December 15, 1950, Rajaji was put in charge of Home Affairs, serving as the country's Home Minister for nearly 10 months. He warned Nehru about the expansionist designs of China and expressed regret over the Tibet problem, his views being shared with his predecessor Sardar Patel. He also expressed concern over demands made to establish new linguistically-based states, arguing that they would generate differences amongst the people.
By the end of 1951, the differences between Nehru and Rajaji came to the fore.While Nehru perceived the Hindu Mahasabha to be the greatest threat to the nascent republic, Rajaji held the opinion that the Communists posed the greatest danger to the nation. Rajaji also strongly opposed Nehru's decision to commute the death sentences awarded to those involved in the Telengana uprising and his strong pro-Soviet leanings. Tired of being persistently overruled by Nehru in making critical decisions, Rajaji submitted his resignation on "grounds of ill-health" and returned to Madras.
Contributions to literature and music
          Rajagopalachari's Mahabharata published by the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan
Rajaji was an accomplished writer both in his mother tongue Tamil as well as English. He was the founder of the Salem Literary Society and regularly participated in its meetings. In 1922, he published a book Siraiyil Tavam (Meditation in jail) which was a day-to-day diary about his first imprisonment from 21 December 1921 to 20 March 1922.
In 1916, Rajaji started the Tamil Scientific Terms Society.This society coined new words in Tamil for terms connected to botany, chemistry, physics, astronomy and mathematics. At about the same time, he called for Tamil to be introduced as the medium of instruction in schools.
In 1951, Rajaji wrote an abridged retelling of the Mahabharata in English,followed by one of the Ramayana in 1957.Earlier, in 1961, he had translated Kambar's Tamil Ramayana into English.In 1965, he translated the Thirukkural into English. He also wrote books on the Bhagavad Gita and the Upanishads in English and Socrates, and Marcus Aurelius in Tamil.Rajaji often regarded his literary works as the best service he had rendered to the people.In 1958, he was awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award for Tamil for his retelling of the Ramayana - Chakravarti Thirumagan. Rajaji was one of the founders of the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, an organisation dedicated to the promotion of education and Indian culture.
Apart from his literary works, Rajaji also composed a devotional song Kurai Onrum Illai devoted to Lord Krishna.This song was set to music and is a regular in most Carnatic concerts. Rajaji composed a benediction hymn which was sung by M. S. Subbulakshmi at the United Nations General Assembly in 1967.


         
                               RAMA KRISHNAN. N  Adambakkam
                                                          PATRIOT

            The  freedom fighter N. Ramakrishnan, was inspired by the Mahatma's speech in Madurai in 1921. Ramakrishnan was drawn into the freedom movement and participated in Satyagraha and Quit India movements. He served two terms in jail.
Apart from his active involvement in the freedom struggle, Ramakrishnan set up a clinic in Adambakkam to provide medical assistance to poor people and conducted free classes during the night for Dalits and farm workers. He successfully organised entry along with Dalits, despite strong protests from caste Hindus.
After Independence, he wanted to keep away from active politics and involve himself in social service. But, he was brought into active politics by Kamaraj. He was one of those instrumental in the selection of party candidates for the 1952 Assembly elections in Tamil Nadu. He successfully contested the Saidapet Assembly constituency in the 1952 elections.
He was elected to the Rajya Sabha in 1957 and served for 15 years.
Though he was a freedom fighter, he refused to apply for government pension. However, he helped many illiterate freedom fighters to get pension. Even five days before his demise he helped a widow in getting pension. 
He was member of the Gandhi Peace Foundation from 1978 and its chairman from 1980 to 1986. He was the chairman of the Khadi Gramodyog Bhavan till his death. He was also a scholar in Carnatic music and wrote music reviews for magazines.
Ramakrishnan actively participated in "Boodhan movement" also and walked along with Vinoba Bhave during his visit to Tamil Nadu.
         He conduced "Sarvodaya Sammelan" in Kancheepuram in 1956 in which Jayaprakash Narayan and Congress leaders participated.

Thanks to The Hindu


                                                
                                     
                                  Rettai Malai SRINIVASAN 
                                 REVOLUTIONARY


A portrait of an old man with curly hair and thick moustache is an essential part of wall posters and other propaganda materials when Dalit outfits in Tamil Nadu organise meetings and rallies. Along with that of B. R. Ambedkar, his name is frequently dropped at public meetings of Dalit parties. Thatha (Grandfather) Rettaimalai Srinivasan (1859-1945) has an iconic presence, and many Dalit leaders imitate his pose when they stand before the camera.
But other than through his autobiography, not much is generally known about the man, who had consistently fought for and secured the rights of the oppressed people in the Madras Presidency, through his Paraiyan Mahajana Sabha and a weekly magazine Paraiyan 
Seeking to fill this surprising gap, the book under review gives a comprehensive account of the western-educated man, a supporter of separate electorate for the weaker sections, and a great patriot who remained a friend of the British as he believed that only the British rule could benefit his people.
However, when he visited England for the Round Table Conference as a representative of the “untouchables” from South India, he refused to shake hands with King George V, saying “he was a slave of the slaves and was an untouchable.”
Rettaimalai was his father’s name. Srinivasan was born in Kozhiyalam in Chengalpet district. After working for the East India Company, he desired to visit England to bring to the notice of the colonial rulers the plight of the “untouchables” but eventually landed up in South Africa. There he had worked as a translator for M.K. Gandhi in the judicial court. Gandhi learnt Tamil from him to understand the greatness of Tirukkural.
On his return, he was elected member of the Madras Legislative Council in 1923. He continued to serve in the council till his death in 1945. In the council he introduced the resolution securing rights for the oppressed class to use public roads, wells, public places, resorts and buildings.
His resolution was unanimously adopted and accordingly the Local Board Act of 1920 was amended in 1927 to pave the way for imposing a fine of Rs 100 on those who prevented others from passing by. He was also instrumental in formation of a Labour Welfare Department in 1919 by the British government to ameliorate the sufferings of the “untouchables”.
The author G. Thangavelu, who retired as the head of the department of History of the Madurai Kamaraj University, has interesting details. Srinvasan’s wife Aranganayagi, in her death bed had asked him to engrave the government order granting civil rights to “untouchables” in her tomb. Srinivasan obliged her and even today one can read this on the tomb in the graveyard in Otteri in Chennai.
In the Round Table Conference, he shared the dais with Dr. Ambedkar and continued to have interaction with him. But, he differed greatly with Ambedkar on the question of “untouchables” converting to other religions. In the Yeola Conference in 1935, Ambedkar thundered “I was born as a Hindu, I solemnly assure you that I will not die as a Hindu”. Rettamalai Srinivasan said, “Depressed Classes are not in the Hindu fold. They are full blooded Dravidian in race”.
Barring the introduction to the book, which is replete with typographical errors, bad construction of sentences and grammatical errors, the book has made a great contribution towards understanding the history of the oppressed people in Tamil Nadu. It places events in perspective, besides giving details about the contemporaries of Srinvasan including M.C. Raja and Swami Sahajananda.
The book also provides insights into the love-hate relationship between the Dalit leaders and Justice Party and the Congress. While the Dalit leaders were suspicious of the attitude of the Justice Party government, the Congress party was also not fully favoured. The book has presented specific cases to support this argument.
The biography is structured in the backdrop of the socio-political situation that prevailed during the days of Srinivasan and everything was a struggle, including the legislation for allowing the entry of “untouchables” into temples.
The speech of M.C. Raja, when the British government conferred the title ‘Diwan Bahadur’ on Srinivasan encapsulates his contribution to the cause of the oppressed sections.
“If the depressed classes are today represented in the Assembly, the legislative council and other local bodies, it was all due to his efforts, guidance and agitations.” 


                                                     
      
                                                 R VENKATRAMAN
                                              FORMER PRESIDENT OF INDIA

A true patriot, R.Venkataraman had the distinguished record of leading any post or organization that he was heading from strength to strength. And in his sparkling career he led many institutions with the wisdom and charisma of a true statesman. Be it defending Indians detained in Malaya and Singapore or presiding over the turmoil of coalition politics when he was the President of India, a period which saw three Prime Ministers in two years, he essayed each role with a felicity keeping only the national interest in mind. Venkataraman was perhaps the last of the ideal public servants who was noted for his work, integrity and commitment, rather than rhetoric and sycophancy that characterizes most of the so-called statesmen nowadays. A strict follower of the Nehru-Gandhi tradition, his life and work is a statement of the fact that he didn’t bring any blemish to the two greatest statesmen ever.
Early Life
 Ramaswamy Venkataraman was born in 1910 in Rajamadam village in Tamil Nadu. He finished his schooling from National College Higher Secondary School at Trichy and attained his Master’s Degree, from Loyola College in Chennai, in economics. Later he completed his law degree from the Law College and joined the Madras High Court in 1935. While practicing law, Venkataraman also actively participated in the Indian National Congress led struggle against British occupation. He was detained for two years for participating in the Quit India Movement of 1942.
     Venkataraman had an avid interest in labor laws and since early in his career as a lawyer he honed his skills and fortitude in all forms of labor law. When he was released from prison by the British in 1944, he took up the Organization of the Labor Section of the Tamil Nadu Provincial Congress Committee. Subsequently, in 1949, he founded the Labor Law Journal that was soon acknowledged as a specialist journal and edited the journal till 1957.
Venkataraman also began to actively participate in trade union movements and led several unions. He also established a number of trade unions to look into the welfare of the labor force. In 1946, when Independence was imminent, Venkataraman was selected in a panel of lawyers tasked with defending Indian nationals in Malaya and Singapore who were charged with collaboration during the Japanese occupation of the two places. In 1947 he became the secretary of the Madras Provincial Bar Federation and served till 1950. In 1951, Venkataraman became a member of the Supreme Court.
 Politics
          Because of his labor activism and skill as a lawyer, it was only natural that Venkataraman found himself drifting into politics at a time when the newly independent nation of India required visionaries to curve its identity. Venkataraman became a member of the Constituent Assembly, which drafted the Constitution of India. The 50’s saw fervent political activity when he was elected to the Provincial Parliament serving till 1952, when he was elected to the first Parliament in which he served till 1957. In the same year, he was re-elected to the Parliament, but resigned from his seat to join the Chennai State Government as a Minister of Labor, Cooperation, Industries, Power, Transport and Commercial Taxes, on the invitation of K. Kamraj, and held the post till 1967.
 From 1953 to 1954, Venkataraman worked as the Secretary to the Congress Parliament Party. In 1952, he was also sent as workers’ delegate to attend the Session of the Metal Trades Committee of International Labor Organization and went to New Zealand as a member of the Indian Parliamentary Delegation to the Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference. During this time, Venkataraman also led the Madras Legislative Council.
In 1967, Venkataraman was entrusted with the portfolio of Industry, Labor, Power, Transport, Communications, and Railways as a member of the Union Planning Commission and held the position until 1971. 
From 1975 to 1977, Venkataraman edited the magazine 'Swarajya' while pursuing his political activity. At various times, he served as a member of the Political Affairs Committee and the Economic Affairs Committee of the union cabinet. Venkataraman was elected to the Lok Sabha in 1977 from the south Madras constituency and served as a Member of Parliament in the Opposition. At the same time, he was also the Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee. 
 Venkataraman re-entered the national political scene in 1980 when he was re-elected to the Lok Sabha and was made the Finance Minister in the Indira Gandhi government. Later, he was appointed the Defence Minister in 1983. Venkataraman initiated a radical change in India’s missile programme by consolidating the entire missile system into Integrated Guided Missile Development Program. It was Venkataraman who transferred APJ Abdul Kalam to the missile programme from the space programme, who was later known as the 'Missile Man of India’ for leading the ballistic missile and space rocket technology. Venkataraman was, then, made the Vice President of India in 1984, and later in July 1987 he was sworn in as the President of India serving till 1992.  During his tenure, Venkataraman had the distinction of working with four Prime Ministers among which he himself had appointed three of them. It was also during his tenure that saw the advent of coalition politics.
United Nations
Venkataraman, throughout the 50s and 60s, worked in various prestigious international organizations. He served a stint as the Governor of the International Monetary Fund, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and the Asian Development Bank. In 1953, 1955, 1956, 1958, 1959, 1960 and 1961, he was the delegate of India at the United Nations General Assembly. At the 42nd Session of the International Labour Conference held at Geneva in 1958, Venkataraman was the leader of the Indian delegation and in 1978 represented India at the Inter Parliamentary Conference held in Vienna. He was appointed a member of the United Nations Administrative Tribunal in 1955 and was made its President in 1968 and held that position till 1979. Venkataraman was elected President for life of the United Nations Tribunal.
Awards And Recognition
The Madras University, the Burdwan University, Nagarjuna University and Philippines University bestowed on Venkataraman the Honorary Doctor of Law. He is also an Honorary Fellow of the Madras Medical College. He received the degree of Doctor of Social Sciences from the University of Roorkee. In recognition of his participation in the freedom movement, Venkataraman was awarded the Tamra Patra.
He received the Soviet Land Prize in 1967 for his travelogue on “Kamraj’s Journey to Soviet Countries”. For his distinguished service as the President of the United Nations Administrative Tribunal, Venkataraman was given a Souvenir by the Secretary of the UN. His Holiness the Sankaracharya of Kancheepuram conferred on Venkataraman the title “Sat Seva Ratna”.
In 2009, at the age of 98, Venkataraman passed away due to multiple organ failure at the Army Research and Referral Hospital, where he was brought 15 days before with complaints of Urosepsis. He is survived by his wife Janaki Venkataraman whom he married in 1938, and three daughters.
Timeline
1910: Ramaswamy Venkataraman was born in Tamil Nadu.
1942: Participated in the Quit India Movement and was detained for two years.
1947: Became the Secretary of the Madras Provincial Bar Federation.
1949: Founded the Labor Law Journal.
1951: Became a member of the Supreme Court.
1953: Became the Secretary of the Congress Parliamentary Committee.
1955: Appointed a member of the United Nations Administrative Tribunal.
1977: Elected to the Lok Sabha.
1980: Was re-elected to the Lok Sabha.
1983: Became the Defence Minister of India.
1984: Elected as the Vice President of India.
1987: Elected as the President of India.
2009: Venkataraman passed away at the age of 98.
Thanks to iloveindia.com




                                                           
 
       
                                    THEERAR SATHYAMURTHY  S
                                        GREAT ORATOR AND MENTOR

It takes uncommon and almost superhuman efforts to stand and oppose what the major portion of the population is following whole heartedly. Satyamurti was a patriot and an Indian politician. It was the high level of courage and an article of faith that S. Satyamurti had in his repertoire that made itself evident when he opposed the Gandhian sensibilities in the 1920s for not participating in the legislature. It was his ability to not withdraw from the situation at hand but to face it with a hearty dedication that escorted him to the safe shores; early, when his father died and the responsibility of taking care of the family was on him, and on many other other occasions afterwards: for the society and the nation. "He was a born freedom-fighter, a leadmine fighter as the Scots say to whom the fight was the thing.”
Early Life
S. Satyamurti was born on 19th August 1887 in Thirumayam, Madras Presidency, British India in an orthodox Brahmin family. His father, Surendur Sastriar was a scholar and a pleader by profession. Satyamurti was one of the nine children and was the eldest among his brothers. When his father passed away, the responsibility of taking care of his mother and siblings fell on him. He completed his intermediate from Puddukottah Maharaja's College and then joined Madras Christian College in 1906 for his B.A. in History. Bright and diligent student that he was, he continued in the same college but this time as a tutor. He further pursued his education in law by joining the Madras Law College. Prior to his participation in the national movement, he had the honor of practicing law under Mr. V.V Sreenivasa Iyengar and later with the former President of the Indian National Congress, Shri S. Sreenivasa Iyengar.
Political Career
Though Satyamurti had plunged into politics early after he had won college elections, officially, his political career started in 1919 when he was made the secretary of the Congress delegation that went to the Joint Parliamentary Committee in UK to protest the Montagu-Chelmsford reforms and the Rowlatt Act. In 1926, he was again sent to UK to present the Indian point of view to the British public. While he was there, he was also the London correspondent of The Hindu newspaper. Just as with many other patriots and freedom fighters, Satyamurti wasn't left behind from landing behind the bars on several occasions. It was in 1930 that he was arrested for lifting the Indian flag on top of the Parthasarathy Temple in Madras.
 Along with C.R. Das and Motilal Nehru, he was one of the leading Swarajists who laid the foundation stone for the parliamentary democracy in India. In 1937, it was result of Satyamurti's persistent efforts that congress romped home in elections to the Madras Legislative Assembly.
In 1939, Satyamurti was appointed as the Mayor of Madras and it was during his tenure that he succeeded in convincing the British government to accept Madras Corporation's proposal for construction of reservoir in Poondi (50 km west of the city) to increase the water supply position in light of an acute water shortage and World War II. It was the unceasing efforts of Satyamurti and his refined administrative abilities that the proposal was accepted and the foundation stone was laid in a matter of eight months. This Poondi Reservoir Scheme is now called the Satyamurti Sagar. He was also actively involved in the Swadeshi Movement and in 1940 that he was arrested and imprisoned again for a period of eight months following his participation in the Individual Satyagraha. On his way back to Madras from the Congress Committee Meeting in Bombay, he was arrested yet again before he could reach back. This was in 1942 during the times of Quit India Movement.
As a Mentor
Satyamurti, during his lifetime, was the mentor of Kumaraswami Kamaraj, who was the Chief Minister of the state of Tamil Nadu between 1954 and 1963. He found Kamaraj "an efficient, loyal, indefatigable worker and skillful organizer". The two of them grew fond of each other with each passing day and their bond became stronger and tougher. Also, they complemented each others' skills. In 1936, when Satyamurti was elected President of the Provincial Congress Committee, he appointed Kamaraj as the General Secretary. Four years later they swapped positions. Such was their passion that the party base was strengthened with their relentless effort. Kamaraj's devotion towards his mentor was such that when India gained independence, he first went to Satyamurti's house and hoisted the Indian flag there.      On his election as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Kamaraj went to Satyamurti's house and garlanded his photo and paid his respects to the leader's widow.
Additionally, he got the headquarters of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee named after Satyamurti as Satyamurti Bhavan in recognition of the tireless work done by the latter for the Tamil Nadu Congress and for India's independence. Also, Kamaraj got the the Poondi reservoir named after Satyamurti as Satyamurti Sagar.
Following a spinal cord injury that he got from the privations in the Amravathi jail in Nagpur, Satyamurti died on 28th March 1943, in Madras General Hospital.
Honors
The Hindu newspaper dedicated a whole column to S. Satyamurti under the title of "Tribune of the people".His fearless and unrelenting efforts had earned him a title of "Dheerar".His efforts in making the Britishers accept the proposal to build a reservoir gave him the honor of the reservoir being named after him - Satyamurti Sagar.Headquarters of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee was named Satyamurti Bhawan in his honor.
Timeline
1887: S. Satyamurti was born.
1906: Joined the Madras Christian College to pursue his graduation in B.A.
1919: Was made the secretary of the congress delegation that was sent to UK to protest the Montagu-Chelmsford Reforms.
1926: Was again sent to UK present the Indian point of view to Britishers.
1930: Was arrested for hoisting the Indian Flag on top of Parthasarathy Temple in Madras.
1939: Was appointed the Mayor of Madras.

1940: Was arrested and detained again for a period of eight months following his participation in the individual Satyagraha.
1942: Was imprisoned when coming back to Madras from Congress Working Committee meeting in Bombay.
1943: S. Satyamurti died at the age of 55

 Thanks to iloveindia.com


                                          SIVAN PILLAI S, Kanyakumari
                                                       REVOLUTIONARY

Sivan Pillai, whose political life spanned seven decades, had been elected to the State Assembly in 1957, 1982 and 1987. Born in 1917 at Kedamangalam as the son of Keettedathu Janaki Amma and Kalapparambil Madhavan Pillai, he jumped into the thick of the independence movement in 1936, by becoming a member of the Indian National Congress. He was involved in all the major milestones during the freedom struggle, including the Quit India Movement, the Struggle for Responsible Government in Travancore and the Paliyam Sathyagraham, demanding the lower castes' right for walking on the public roads of Chendamangalam. He was imprisoned for almost seven years.

The veteran freedom fighter, CPI leader and former MLA, N. Sivan Pillai, died at North Paravur on Saturday morning. He was 87.




Sardar VEDA RATNAM PILLAI
ORGANISER 

 Sardar Vedaratnam Pillai (25 February 1897 - 24 August 1961) was an Indian freedom-fighter, a leader of the Indian National Congress and a famous philanthropist who served as a MLA for three terms over a period of 14 years. He is known for his heroic contributions in the salt march of Vedaranyam in 1930, alongside C. Rajagopalachari.
In the year 1931 Vedaratnam was conferred with the title of ‘Sardar’ at the meeting of the Tamil Nadu Agriculturists and labourers at Tirunelveli, for his exploits in the Vedaranyam Salt March.
He was multi-lingual and patronised many native arts.
In the year 1946, he founded the Kasturba Gandhi Kanya Gurukulam which is a rural, charitable women's welfare organisation situated in Vedaranyam. This orphanage, since then, has continued its services of feeding, sheltering and educating many helpless girl children.
In the year 1997, the government of India honoured this leader by releasing a postal stamp in commemoration of his centenary celebration
On 25 February 1897, Vedaratnam came into the world in a traditional Hindu family in the coastal town of Vedaranyam in Tamil Nadu. He was born in the noble lineage of the phenomenal saint-poet Thayumanavar, who richly served Tamil literature and religion.
Vedaratnam hence personified simplicity, piety, fiery patriotism and served the temple and conducted prayers right from his tender days. As he turned twenty, he was greatly influenced by Mahatma Gandhi and his ideology. He was equally enamoured by the ancient Thirukural.
The rural women welfare organisation that he founded has provided succour to thousands of poor girl children over the years and is fully functional to the day. Many visitors from various countries have paid visits to Gurukulam and have appreciated their services.

                                             Sir SUBRAMANIYA IYAR
                                DEVOTIONAL ADMINISTRATOR

Sir Subbaiyar Subramania Iyer (1842–1924) was Vice-President of the Theosophical Society from 1907 to 1911 during Dr Annie Besant’s tenure as President.  His association with the Theosophical movement began from the 1880s when Col. Olcott and Madame Blavatsky arrived in Madras.  He co-operated with Dr Besant in all her multifarious movements, educational, social, political, Theosophical and spiritual. 
He was one of a core group of patriots responsible for the founding of the Indian National Congress in 1885 and an active worker and Honorary President of Dr Besant’s Home Rule League.  A lawyer by profession, he was elevated to the Bench in 1895, and became the first Indian Judge to be made Acting Chief Justice of the Madras High Court, during the British regime.  He was knighted in recognition of his work but surrendered his knighthood as a protest against the internment of Dr Besant and her colleagues by the Madras Government.  He acted as the legal adviser of The Theosophical Society and worked in this capacity till his last days.  Dr Besant writes:
‘He never flinched, he never changed in his devotion to Theosophy, which he regarded as the Brahmavidya of Hinduism.’
Early days
Subbaiyar Subramania Iyer was born of Brahman parents on 1 October 1842 in Madura (now Madurai) District, South India.  He was brought up amid the enlivening and chastening circumstances of a high-caste Hindu family and hence had access to education in English very early in life.  His mind was thus open in its formative period to the influences introduced by the West. 
 His father Subbaiyar was a trusted Vakil or agent of the Zamindar of Ramnad (Madura District).  He died in 1844 when Subramaniam was only two years old.  Young Subramaniam had his early schooling in a Christian Mission, then in an English school, and in 1856 he entered Zilla High School.  He was successful in various fields and passed the highest examination in that school in 1859.  His name appeared in the official Gazette and caught the eye of the Collector of the District, and soon the successful young man started his career in Government service as a clerk.
While serving as a clerk, Subramania Iyer passed the examination to become a pleader at the head of the list for the Madras Presidency, but he was not given permission to practise.  However, when the Criminal Procedure Code came into force in 1862, his legal qualifications found recognition.
His Career as a Lawyer
The year 1857 saw the establishment of the University of Madras and in 1864 the High Court in Madras came into existence.  Under its rules anyone who took the Bachelor of Law degree at Madras University and studied for a year under a practitioner of the High Court could be admitted to plead before it.  Subramania Iyer took the opportunity to go in for higher studies and became a student once again.   Though working all day in the office, he passed the Matriculation examination in 1865, Fellow of Arts in 1866 and Bachelor of Law in 1868 — all by private study.  These added qualifications secured him promotion to the office of Tahsildar, but he soon resigned and apprenticed himself to an English Barrister who was also the Official Reporter to the High Court.  Subramania Iyer became a reporter to the High Court himself and was formally admitted to the Bar in 1869.  Within a few months he was able to start his career and returned to Madura where he practised for fourteen years.
In 1870, as a young man of twenty-eight, blossoming into a leader of the Bar, he was appointed the Municipal Commissioner of Madura, in which capacity he did much for that city.  He was also a member of the Madura District Board.  In 1873 he won a suit against a temple committee for discrepancies in their accounts, after which he strove hard throughout his life to introduce rectitude into the management of temples.  He founded the Dharma Rakshana Sabha for carrying out reforms and for the redress of grievances in the management of Hindu temples.
 He was also the pioneer of a movement which culminated in the passing of the Hindu Religious Endowments Act and the establishment of the Hindu Religious Endowments Board.  Later, as a Judge, he advocated that surplus temple funds be used for religious education and amenities for pilgrims.  In 1875, when H. M. the late Emperor Edward visited Madura as Prince of Wales, Subramania Iyer was chosen to be the spokesman of the town and presented its loyal address of welcome.  In 1877, recognition of his work came to Mr Iyer in the form of a Certificate of Merit awarded by Lord Lytton at Delhi.  In 1884 Sir M. E. Grant Duff, Governor of Madras, visited Madura and, recognizing the worth of Subramania Iyer, nominated him a non-official member of the Madras Legislative Council.
       The year 1884 was a turning point in Subramania Iyer’s life. He lost his wife and had to come to terms with his grief.  He came into contact with Col. H. S. Olcott and joined The Theosophical Society, of which he remained a staunch and loyal member till the end.  It was in Madras that he first met Mr T. Subba Row, a Hindu scholar and Theosophist, who much impressed him.
In December 1884 Subramania Iyer was one of the seventeen men of the Provisional Committee formed in Madras that began the long struggle for India’s freedom and evolved the scheme of a national assembly.  In 1885 the Indian National Congress held its first formal session in Bombay.  Mr Iyer, as one of the co-founders, contributed significant information about the working of the Legislative Councils.   This is one of the instances of Mr Iyer’s advocacy of popular government — long before the arrival of Annie Besant in India.  In the same year Mr Iyer moved to Madras and took up practice in the High Court, thus widening the sphere of his activity.  He was also appointed a Fellow of the University.  From this time onwards he was a constant adviser of the President of The Theosophical Society, Col. Olcott, and was made a member of the Executive Committee.
         In 1887, the British Government gave expression to their appreciation of Subramania Iyer’s work; he became the first Indian to be appointed Government Pleader and Public Prosecutor.  Owing to his unique abilities, high character and distinction, Mr Iyer was able to break down the prevalent racial prejudice and be accepted, and to enter for the first time into what had been regarded as the close preserve of the Europeans.  At the end of his first term of office the Chief Justice wrote him a special letter of appreciation for his work.  In 1895 he rose to the Bench of Madras High Court and till his retirement in 1907 he continued to be an honoured Judge, thrice being raised to Acting Chief Justice — in 1899, 1903 and 1906.  The Privy Council recognized him as ‘a Hindu lawyer of great distinction’ and showed deference to his views; the public idolized him as one who never failed to temper justice with mercy.
The British Government, recognizing his brilliant work in his profession and his contribution to public welfare as a non-official member of the Legislative Council, made him  a C.I.E. — ‘Commander of the Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire’ — in 1889.  In 1891 he was given the Indian title of ‘Diwan Bahadur’, and in 1900 he was made a ‘Knight Commander of the Indian Empire’ and became Sir Subramania Iyer. He retired from the office of Judge in November 1907, owing to failing eyesight.
The Theosophical Society
Having joined The Theosophical Society in the early 1880s Subramania Iyer threw himself into active work for the Movement.  He was the Founder-President of the Madura Lodge of The Theosophical Society till 1885 when he settled in Madras.
       In Madras, he was made a member of the inner committee of seven which really managed all the affairs of the Society.  Col. H. S. Olcott, the President of the Theosophical Society, consulted him upon all points requiring decision, and placed great reliance on his judgement.  He was also a member of the committee appointed to investigate the Coulomb affair, and it was largely owing to his advice that Madame Blavatsky was dissuaded from prosecuting them.  In 1893, he met Annie Besant at the Annual Convention at Adyar and remained her staunch friend, working with her in all her various activities of nation-building and Theosophy. He was the co-founder of the Young Men’s Indian Association with Dr Besant, and an active worker and Honorary President of the National Home Rule League till he passed away. Annie Besant wrote of him: 
'He joined The Theosophical Society in its early days, when it was despised and rejected of men, shed lustre on it by his brilliant intelligence, his spotless life, and his profound devotion to Helena Petrovna Blavatsky.  He stood by her through the infamous Coulomb attack, and was a member of the Committee which investigated the charges and declared her innocent of the accusation of fraudulent phenomena brought against her.'
Sir Subramania Iyer was the Recording Secretary (1905–6) and assisted Col. Olcott when the Theosophical Society was incorporated on 3 April 1905 at Madras.  He was appointed Vice-President in 1907 when Dr Besant took the office of President of The Theosophical Society.  In 1911 when Mr Sinnett decided to rejoin the Society she offered him the position of Vice-President, and cabled to Sir Subramania Iyer to ask if he were willing to resign to make this appointment possible, and he gallantly and immediately agreed to  do so.
In 1917, Sir Subramania Iyer took the bold step of addressing Mr Woodrow Wilson, President of the USA, on British misrule in India, citing particularly the incarceration of Annie Besant, G. S. Arundale and B. P. Wadia and requesting him to use America’s influence for Indian Home Rule.  He also surrendered all the honours conferred on him by the British Government as, in Dr Besant’s words,
‘he would not wear an honour given by a Government which had struck so shrewd a blow at his country’s liberties’.  
He was unceasing in his efforts to obtain the release of his colleagues.  The agitation was successful and resulted in their release within three months.  He continued to be actively involved in the work of The Theosophical Society and various other causes for his country till his last days.
Author and Educationist
In 1904, Sir Subramania Iyer became the first Indian to be made the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Madras.  He was appointed a member of its Senate in 1886, and held that position until 1907.  He was elected a member of the Syndicate (the executive body of the University) several times, and served in that capacity for some eight or nine years.  In March 1908, Madras University conferred on him the LLD (Doctor of Laws) degree honoris causa and he was again the first Indian to receive it.  Sir Subramania took a keen interest in the education of the youth of India.  He pleaded for lightening the curriculum of studies, for making education less examination-ridden, for the diffusion of liberal culture and for other important educational reforms.  His Convocation Address of 1896 concerned the development of higher education in India, and was full of valuable counsel to youth.
Sir Subramania Iyer was popularly known as Sir Mani Iyer, a man whose liberality knew no bounds, whose heart went out to the poor and suffering.  His intellectual generosity also was unique: wherever he perceived talent, he was lavish in its praise and always encouraging.  He helped the young men in the Bar as well as large numbers of students to educate themselves and no one in difficulty ever went to him without obtaining the needed means of relief.  While he was Judge, his juniors had an ample share in his prosperity.  Mr N. Sri Ram, as a young man with his friends, would visit Sir Mani Iyer every week in order to receive his support and instructions in their work for the motherland.  
Sir Subramania Iyer published many articles in New India and Theosophical journals, the two most important being ‘Rishi Gârgyâyana's Pranava-vâda’ and ‘An Esoteric Organization in India’, the latter being published as a book by the Modern Printing Works, Madras.  His interests lay in social and educational reforms along with ancient Indian texts and he wrote on these subjects.  Being a keen student of Theosophy he was responsible for getting three important books published.  The ‘Roof Talks’ given by C. W. Leadbeater and Annie Besant contained a wealth of information, due to new clairvoyant research; these often developed from a question put by a student in an intimate circle.  Sir Mani Iyer contributed generously to help in the publication of these ‘Talks’ which became The Inner Life by C. W. Leadbeater.  He was also one of the few in a small group who received private instruction from Mr T. Subba Row; the notes he made were published in the 1931 edition of the Esoteric Writings of T. Subba Row. Further, Sir Mani Iyer commissioned a shorthand writer to transcribe the lectures of T. Subba Row on the Bhagavadgitâ, given during the Theosophical Convention in 1886; these were published as a book entitled The Philosophy of the Bhagavadgitâ.  These talks were deeply scholarly and mystical and Madame Blavatsky quoted extensively from this book in The Secret Doctrine.  Hence Sir Subramania Iyer’s contribution to Theosophical literature, though indirect, was nevertheless valuable.
Sir Subramania Iyer, after his retirement as Justice of the Madras Bench, concentrated on serving The Theosophical Society and his country, even while on his own spiritual quest.  He took to the systematic investigation of many forms of meditation.  Consequent to his spiritual pursuits and meditative practice he appeared to have attained certain occult powers, incompatible with a worldly life, and became a recluse. Doubtlessly his spiritual transformation was enkindled and fuelled in no small measure by his association with HPB, T. Subba Row, Dr Besant and The Theosophical Society.  Dr Besant, wrote about Mani Iyer’s last days:
He was ill for very long, but to the end his splendid brain remained strong; the last few months were full of pain, but the dear old man remained patient throughout, only longing to go Home; and he went gladly to the Master he loved and served.

He passed away on 5 December 1924.


       
                                            SORNAMMAL, Kottar
                                       PATRIOT OF CHARITY


       The Kerala Gandhi Smarak Nidhi in association with the National Foundation for Communal Harmony (Government of India) and the Indian Council of Gandhian Studies, New Delhi would organise the Interstate Gandhi Peace Bus Youth Expedition, first of its kind in the country, from Kanyakumari to Mangalore from June 17 to July 2 as part of its diamond jubilee celebration programme.
          The Interstate Gandhi peace bus youth expedition would go through places Gandhi travelled in the South particularly in Kanyakumari district (known as Nanjil Nadu in the erstwhile Travancore state) to arouse national consciousness, strengthen movement against social injustice, accelerate temple entry proclamation and ensure equal rights for women.
        Even though quite a large number of people from this district dedicated and lost their precious lives during the freedom struggle a few were still remembered and their family members respected by the local people. It is the right time to remember those who turned models to the younger generation among many other unsung heroes in the freedom struggle from the district.
         Quoting a few freedom fighters who were closely associated with Mahatma Gandhi, late A.Sankara Pillai, a leading lawyer of Nagercoil bar, sacrificed his lucrative practice and involved himself actively in the freedom struggle and served as the president of Nagercoil Congress Committee.
          During this period Mahatma Gandhiji visited his home. He had been imprisoned and his family faced a lot of difficulties during those times. During his absence, the chief of Salvation Army, Dr. Noble, his wife and the then Kottar Bishop helped the family members, recapitulates his daughter Shantha Balakrishnan, who is now working for the welfare of the poor particularly women.
        Mahatma Gandhi travelled throughout India to infuse patriotism in the minds of the people. On one such occasion he had come to Nagercoil on October 8, 1927, along with his wife Kasturibai.
        He stayed in Perumal Panikkar's house at Kottar. Gandhi saw Panikkar's eldest daughter, Sornammal, wearing a lot of jewels. On looking at her, Gandhiji asked her “why not you give it to the nation to help fight against the British rule in India?” Inspired by his speech she gave all her jewels, remembers her great grandson, S. R. Sree Ram.
        Similarly the role of Dr. M. E. Naidu and Theroor S.Sivan Pillai is still remembered by all.
        When Vaikkom satyagraha was going on in Kerala, a committee was formed in the erstwhile Kanyakumari district to create awareness on temple entry in Suchindrum and satyagraha campaign along with Perumal Panikkar.
         Dalits were not only prohibited to enter the temple but also barred from walking through the streets where the caste Hindus lived. Finally after the temple entry proclamation, everyone was allowed to enter into the temple to offer worship, said the son of Theroor Sivan Pillai, S. Vijayakumar
        Moreover Dr. Naidu continued to fight for a decade i.e., from 1926 to 1936. He was affectionately referred as ‘Emperumal' literally meaning ‘deity.'
         Mahatma Gandhi visited the district thrice – twice in the year 1925 (Kanyakumari and Nagercoil ) and third time in Nagercoil in 1934 to address a public meeting.
Gandhiji also visited SMMS School at Suchindrum in 1937 and Scott Women's Christian College in Nagercoil.
        The specially designed Gandhi peace bus for the youth would travel from Kanyakumari to Mangalore following Gandhiji's footsteps to recapture the spirit of those times and rekindle the patriotic fervour as well as remember and honour the sacrifices made by the freedom fighters of the district during freedom struggle, said the working chairman of Kerala Gandhi Smarka Nidhi, Dr. N. Radhakrishnan
Thanks to the Hindu



                             Thesiya Kavi  SUBRAMANIYA BHARATHI
                                                            NATIONAL POET

Subramanya Bharathi was a Tamil poet, reformer and freedom fighter during the pre-independence era. Also referred to by the name of Mahakavi Bharathiyar meaning Great Poet of Tamil, Bharathi's name is counted amongst the most celebrated bards of the country. He was an expert at both prose and poetry and used these to the best of his ability to coax the masses in the south to join the great Indian struggle for independence.
His time was the most eventful one in the history of India and his contemporaries included the likes of Mahatma Gandhi, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Sri Aurobindo and V.V.S. Aiyar. Read on to know more about Subramanya Bharathi, who got attracted to the Hindu spirituality and nationalism during his stay at Varanasi. He attended the meeting of the All India National Congress in the year 1905 here and on his return also got the opportunity to meet Sister Nivedita, the spiritual daughter of the great Indian philosopher and thinker, Swami Vivekananda. Subramanya Bharathi felt very impressed on meeting Sister Nivedita. This phase proved to be a crucial turning point in the life history of Subramanya Bharathi. He now began to take active interest in the affairs of the outside.
As such, Subramanya Bharathi entered the sphere of journalism by joining as assistant editor of a Tamil daily 'Swadeshamitran' in 1904. In the coming time, he became the editor of a Tamil weekly 'India' and another English newspaper 'Bala Bharatham' in 1907. These newspapers not only helped to awaken the feeling of nationalism among the masses and inform about the daily affairs of the outside world, but also served to bring out the creativity of Bharathi. Bharathi began to publish his poems regularly in these editions and the themes often delved from complex religious hymns to rousing nationalist sentiments to songs on the Russian and French revolutions.
 He was simultaneously against social poverty, exploitation and abuse of the downtrodden people and the British ruling over the country. Though he lived a life of utter poverty, he was always positive in his thoughts and action.
His used the adeptness at poetry to the best of his ability to coax the masses in the south to join the great Indian struggle for independence. Bharathi's name is counted amongst the most celebrated bards of the country.

Born - 11 December 1882
 Died - 11 September 1921
Thanks to www.iloveindia.

                                                                 
         
                                                    C P SUBBAIAH
                                        Freedom fighter Friend of Rajaji
       C P  Subbaiah (August 19, 1895 – March 28, 1967) was an Indian freedom fighter associated with the Indian National Congress and a protege of Chakravarthi Rajagopalachari. He was based in Coimbatore and was influential in the Congress movement in Tamil Nadu.
Early life
     C.P. Subbaiah was born to Thiru. Periasamy Mudaliar and Thirumathi. Meenakshi Ammal in the year 1895 in Coimbatore. He had a younger brother,Viswanathan Mudaliar and younger sister Mangalambal. Inspired by the ideology of Mahatma Gandhi, Subbaiah entered the freedom struggle for Independent India soon after the First world war at the age of 22.
Indian independence movement
     C.P. Subbaiah joined the Congress party and was imprisoned several times by the British in the freedom struggle. His imprisonment along with "Kappal Otiya Tamizhan" V.O. Chidambaranar in Coimbatore prison is noted. Due to his great public speaking skills and fierce determination, he was elected as the secretary of the congress party in Coimbatore. His inspiring speech along with Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru in Karachi, earned him the name "Karachi Thatha".
    In 1937, Subbaiah won the general election against Diwan bahadur C.S. Rathina Sabapathi Mudaliar from Justice Party and served as the Member of Legislative Assembly for Madras State. He continued his political struggle under his mentor Chakravarthi C. Rajagopalachari and contested against Sathya Murthi's candidate Kamaraj for the Congress party president election. He lost the election by 3 votes and Kamaraj became the President of the Congress party in Tamil Nadu. This was turning point in the history of the Indian politics. Avinashilinga Chettiar has written about his days in jail along with C.P.Subbaiah in his book - The Sacred Touch - An Autobiography
Post-Independence
     After India got its Independence, Subbaiah announced his retirement from active politics much to the astonishment of everyone. In 1950, after India became a Republic, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, India's first President, offered him the post of Rajya Sabha member. Subbaiah politely refused it stating that his job is over as soon as India was free and suggested this opportunity be given to dynamic and educated youngsters. Appreciating this action, Mr. Kalki Krishnamurthy wrote an article "Subbaiah Potta Podu" in the Kalki weekly magazine. Subbaiah also refused all pensions and grants that were offered to him for his Freedom struggle.
Later years and Death
     Soon after independence, Subbaiah established himself as a successful businessman and opened his Cement Agency all over South India. In the year 1967, twenty years after Indian independence, Subbaiah campaigned for his close friends Pollachi N. Mahalingam and S.R. Ponnusamy Chettiar for the Coimbatore West Constituency elections at the R.S.Puram burial ground. This was his last speech. In this election, the Congress party lost in numerous constituencies and was defeated bringing the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam to power. Being a devoted Congressman, this loss caused him great grief. He died soon after in a heart-attack at the Sirkazhi Railway Station on March 28, 1967. The street that he lived in Coimbatore is named as Subbaiah Mudaliar Street in his honor.
Family
C.P.Subbaiah adopted his brother Viswanathan's eldest child C.S. Janarthanan and raised him as his own. Janarthanan took over his business after his death and expanded it successfully. Viswanathan Mudaliar's second son, C.V. Govardhan was a leading advocate and served as the Justice of Madras high court.
Charitable Trust
       Continuing his legacy, Sri Subbaiah Janarthanan Charitable Trust was started by his grandson C.J. Raghunathan, along with his mother Indirani Janardhanan in fond rememberance of his grand-father C.P.Subbaiah Mudaliar and father C.S.Janardhanan on 16th October, 2009 in Coimbatore. The primary objectives of this trust are to provide monetary assistanship to poor and qualified students to pursue higher education and Medical assistance for poor and needy people.

                                                


                                             SUBBARAYAN P
                                   EDUCATED POLITICIAN 

     Subbarayan was born to Paramasivam in the family estate of Kumaramangalam near Tiruchengode, Namakkal district on 11 September 1889. He belonged to the family of Zamindars. He graduated from the Presidency College, Madras  and obtained his M.A  and LLD  from the Christ Church, Oxford  and the University of Dublin respectively  He started practising as an advocate of the Madras High Court in 1918
    In 1922, Subbarayan was nominated to the Madras Legislative Council as an independent candidate representing the landowners of the South-Central division of the Madras Presidency  and served as a Council Secretary. He took the side of C. R. Reddy and the Swarajists and voted against the Raja of Panagal during the no-confidence motion of 1923
   In 1926  the British  Governor of Madras chose Subbarayan, an independent member  to form the Government and nominated 34 new members to the Madras Legislative Council to support him. Subbarayan's regime was appointed and largely controlled by the Governor.
    Subbarayan was re-elected as an independent to the Madras Legislative Council in 1930. As a member of the legislature, Subbarayan was instrumental in introducing prohibition in Salem district in 1930. Prohibition was enforced in Salem till 1943 when it was scrapped by the British. In 1932, C. S. Ranga Iyer passed the Untouchability Abolition Bill in the Imperial Legislative Council.  On 1 November 1932, Subbarayan proposed the Temple Entry Bill which permitted low-caste Hindus and Dalits enter Hindu temples and made their prohibition illegal and punishable.  He also passed a copy of the resolution and the proceedings of the Council to Mahatma Gandhi who was in jail  The Viceroy, however, refused permission explaining that temple entry was an all-India problem and should not be dealt with in a provincial basis even while clearing Ranga Iyer's bill. The Temple Entry Bill was not passed until the Indian National Congress came to power in 1937. Subbarayan had been a follower of Mahatma Gandhi from his early days  and he officially joined the Indian National Congress in 1933  He also served as the President of the Tamil Nadu Harijan Sevak Sangh
    Subbarayan was an admirer of Indian National congress leader Chakravarti Rajagopalachari right from his early days Rajaji had been his personal lawyer in property cases. In 1937, when the Indian National Congress swept to power in the Madras Presidency and Rajaji took over as the Chief Minister of the Presidency, he appointed Subbarayan the Minister of Law and Education.  
  Subbarayan resigned along with other members of the Rajaji cabinet when war was declared in 1939 Subbarayan also served as the President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India from 1937–38 to 1945–46.
   Subbarayan actively participated in the Quit India Movement and was arrested along with other Congress leaders as Sathyamurthy and M. Bakthavatsalam.
      In 1947, he served as a Minister for Home and Police in the Ramaswamy Reddiar Cabinet in Madras  and was a member of the Constituent Assembly of India  He served as a member of the Provincial COnstitution Committee
     From 1949 to 1951, Subbarayan served as independent India's first ambassador to Indonesia. He was instrumental in the signing of a mutual treaty of friendship with the Indonesian Foreign Minister Mohammed Roem on 3 March 1951  Subbarayan's tenure came to an end in 1951 and he was succeeded by Alagappan.
   On his return to India, Subbarayan was elected President of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee Subbarayan also served as a member of Rajya Sabha from 1954 to 1957  In 1957, Subbarayan was elected to the Lok Sabha from Tiruchengode and served as a member till 1962  He was elected again in 1962  but was instead made Governor of Maharashtra.
     Subbarayan was a member of the First Official Language Commission constituted by Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru on 7 June 1955, under the chairmanship of B. G. Kher. The commission delivered its report on 31 July 1956. It recommended a number of steps to eventually replace English with Hindi as the sole official language of India. Subbarayan and another member – Suniti Kumar Chatterji from West Bengal – did not agree with its findings and added dissenting notes to the report.  Later when the Indian President Rajendra Prasad sought his opinion on making Hindi as the sole official language, Subbarayan advised against it.
     Subbarayan served as the Minister of Transport and Communications in the Government of India union cabinet from 1959  to 1962
   Subbarayan took a keen interest in sports during his lifetime. He wrote numerous articles on cricket  and was the Founder-President of the Indian Cricket Federation, the first association in the Madras Presidency to represent Indian cricketing interests. He also served as the President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India during the Second World War. With Sir John Beaumont and Sikandar Hayat Khan, he formed the commission that investigated the return of Lala Amarnath from the India's tour of England in 1936. He also served as the President of the Madras Olympic Association and the Madras Hockey Association.


   Subbarayan died at the age of 73 on 6 October 1962.



                             
                                              C SUBRAMANYAM
                                        FATHER OF GREEN REVOLUTION


C.Subramaniam was born on 30 January 1910 Senguttaipalayam near Pollachi in Coimbatore districtTamil Nadu. Subramaniam completed his early education in Pollachi before moving to Chennai where he did his B.Sc in Physics at the Presidency College, Chennai. Later he graduated with degree in law from Madras Law collegeChennai. During his college days, he started Vanamalar Sangam and published a magazine called Pithan from Gobichettipalayam along with Periyasaamy ThooranK. S. Ramaswamy GounderO. V. Alagesan and Justice Palanisami. His inspiration was his uncle Swami Chidbhavananda.
Subramaniam was an active member of the Civil disobedience movement against the British during his college days. He was imprisoned during the Quit India Movement in 1942. He was later elected to the Constituent Assembly and had a hand in the framing of the Constitution of India. He was a minister of Education, Law and Finance for Madras State from 1952 to 1962 under chief ministers Rajaji and K. Kamaraj. When he was the education minister in Tamilnadu under Shri Kamaraj, he brought lot of reforms in education like free education, free mid day meals to students and uniforms to students  that were  later adopted by other States. One of the feather in his famous cap was the introduction of Tamil as the official language of the Tamil Nadu state in 1956 as a minister under K Kamaraj ministry. A great feat ,Tamil became official language of the land  after 700 years.

          He was the Leader of the House in the Madras Legislative Assembly for the entire duration. He was elected to the Lok Sabha in 1962 and was the Minister for Steel and Mines. Subsequently, he served as the Minister for Food and Agriculture. He also worked as the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission from 2 May 1971 to 22 July 1972.

Along with M. S. Swaminathan and B. Sivaraman, Subramaniam was the architect of India’s modern agricultural development policy, after the success of his programme which led to a record production of wheat in 1972 termed as the Indian Green Revolution. As Minister for Food and Agriculture, he introduced high-yielding varieties of seeds and more intensive application of fertilizers which paved the way for increased output of cereals and attainment of self-sufficiency in food-grains in the country. About his contribution, Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, writes: The vision and influence of Mr. Subramaniam in bringing about agricultural change and in the very necessary political decisions needed to make the new approach effective, should never be under-emphasized. The groundwork for this advance (in the production of wheat) was solidly laid during that period (1964–67) when Mr. Subramaniam was the guiding political force instituting change.

He appointed M. S. Swaminathan, who played a major role in green revolution and Verghese Kurien as the chairman of National Dairy Development Board when he ushered the Indian White Revolution. Kurien says, that the key role played by Subramaniam in the whole thing (Operation Flood) is hardly mentioned. He founded the National Agro Foundation, Chennai and Bharathidasan Institute of Management, Tiruchirappalli.

When the Indian National Congress split in 1969, he became the interim president of Congress (I) started by Indira Gandhi. Later, he was appointed as Minister of Finance in the union cabinet by Indira Gandhi. He advised her to devalue Indian rupee and was the finance minister during the emergency in 1976.  After the emergency, he parted ways with Indira and joined the breakaway Congress faction led by Devraj Urs and Kasu Brahmananda Reddy.

He was practically holding the second position next to Prime Minister in those days for more than two decades, he never exposed his family to the public life or exploited to his personal advantage.

He became the Governor of Maharashtra in 1990Government of India recognised his services to the Nation, and honoured him with the coveted Bharat Ratna Award in 1998.

       He passed away in November 7, 2000 at his 90th age. Even before his death, he created National Agro Foundation, to take the country towards second green revolution.



                                                        
      
                                               SUBRAMANYA SIVA
                                                       GREAT PATRIOT

S.Subramaniya Siva (4 October 1884 - 23 July 1925) was an Indian writer and activist during the Indian independence movement.
Subramaniya Siva was born in Batlagundu near Dindigul in erstwhile Madurai district of Madras presidency. He was born to Rajam Iyer. He joined the Indian freedom movement in 1908.He was fighting for freedom of our motherland along with Bharathi and V O Chidambaram.
In 1908, he was arrested by the British and was the first political prisoner in Madras jail. While serving a prison term, he was afflicted by leprosy and was shifted to Salem jail. Since leprosy was regarded as a contagious disease, the British authorities forbade him to travel by rail after his release and hence he was forced to travel on foot. He continued to fight for independence and was incarcerated many times until 1922.
He eventually succumbed to leprosy on 23 July 1925. He was the author of the journal Jnanabhanu and books Ramanuja Vijayam and Madhya vijayam.
The office of Dindugal district collector is named after as Thiagi Subramania Siva Maaligai after him. Bathlagundu bus stand is named after Siva. A memorial has been established at Papparapatti near Pennagaram in Dharmapuri district.


Tamil Tentral Thiru VI KA 
LABOUR UNIONIST

Thiruvarur Viruttachala Kalyanasundaram (August 26, 1883 – September 17, 1953), better known by his Tamil initials Thiru. Vi .Ka (Thiruvarur Virudhachala Kalyanasundaram Mudaliar), was a Tamil scholar, essayist and activist. He is esteemed for the strong humanism of his essays, the analytical depth of his commentaries on classical Tamil literature and philosophy, and the clear, fluid style of his prose. His works, along with those of V. O. Chidambaram PillaiMaraimalai Adigal, and Arumuga Navalar are considered to have defined the style of modern Tamil prose.
Thiru Vi. Ka was born in the village of Thullam in Chengalpet district, near Chennai in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu on 26 August 1883 in the Sozhiya Saiva Vellala community. He attended the Wesley College High School, and also studied Tamil under Maraimalai Adigal and N. Kathiravel Pillai of Jaffna. He worked briefly as a teacher, and in 1917 became an editorial assistant on Desabaktan, a nationalist Tamil daily. Thiru Vi. Ka. was soon involved in various aspects of the independence movement. During this period, he became a strong campaigner for worker rights. In 1918, he became active in the trade union movement as an associate of BP Wadia, and organised the first trade unions in the south of India.
In 1920, Thiru. Vi. Ka. started a new Tamil weekly magazine, titled Navasakthi. Navasakthi would be the vehicle for his thoughts for much of the rest of his life. Thiru Vi. Ka. sought to make his magazine a beacon to the Tamil people. His writings reflected his political and philosophical views. He published one of the first Tamil interpretations of the thought of Mahatma Gandhi, which is still regarded as an important milestone in Gandhian studies. He wrote a number of works on the religious and spiritual thought of Ramalinga Swamigal, an influential Tamil Saivite philosopher-saint of the 19th century. He wrote commentaries on a number of works of classical Tamil literature, which appeared as serials in Navasakthi.
Over the course of his writing career, Thiru Vi. Ka. published over fifty books. These include Manitha Vazhkkaiyum Gandhiyadigalum, a study of the implications of Gandhi's thought for human conduct. His Pennin perumai allatu valkait tunai nalam was one of the most read books of that period. Also very influential, albeit at a more critical level, is his study of the concept of Beauty in Hinduism, published as Murugan alladhu azaku(Lord Murugan or Beauty). His writings reflect the internationalism characteristic of Indian intellectuals of that period, a strong pride in Indian and Tamil culture, coupled with a strong belief in the unity and universal kinship of all human thought.

In his writings, Thiru Vi. Ka. developed a prose style which built on the inner rhythms of the Tamil language and produced a rhythmic, flowing text. The field of Tamil prose was still relatively new, and the style he developed was extremely influential. His works are today seen as having given a new energy to the Tamil language and regarded as part of the foundations on which the modern Tamil prose style has been built.


                                                           Tholar JEEVA
                                                           GREAT COMMUNIST

P. Jeevanandham (1907–1963) also called Jeeva, was a social reformer, political leader, litterateur and one of the pioneers of the Communist and socialist movements in the state of Tamil Nadu, India.
He was not only a socio-political leader, but was also a cultural theoretician, an excellent orator, journalist and critic; and above all, a relentless fighter for the deprived. A down-to-earth person with a clean record in public life, Jeevanandham was held in high esteem by ordinary people.
P. Jeevanandham was born in the town of Boothapandi, in the then princely state of Travancore (which is now in Kanyakumari District of Tamil Nadu) into an orthodox middle-class family on 21 August 1907. His original name was Sorimuthu.  He was named this name after his clan god Sorimuthu.
The orthodox and religious background of his family exposed Jeevanandham to literature, devotional songs and the arts, early on in his life. He grew up in an era when caste-based rigidity was widely prevalent, and from early on in his life he resented the very idea of untouchability and could not tolerate his Dalit friends being denied entry into temples and public places and being humiliated. Even as a schoolboy he became averse to Varnasrama Dharma, a Hindu religious code that stratifies society on caste lines and facilitates the practice of untouchability. The national movement and Gandhi’s call to wear khadi and his stand against untouchability influenced Jeevanandham to join the movement. He began wearing only khadi from then on.
Jeevanandham took his Dalit friends into the streets and public places where, usually, entry was denied to them, which earned him the displeasure of his family and orthodox caste members in his village. His father disapproved his behaviour and asked him to stop all things which were against their caste traditions. Jeevanandham said he would rather leave his home rather than follow discriminatory practices and eventually did so.
Jeevanandham started his political life basing himself on Gandhian ideas. In 1924, he participated in the Vaikom Satyagraha against upper-caste Hindus, where Dalits were barred from walking on the road leading to the temple at Vaikom. He participated in a similar protest, demanding entry for Dalits into the Suchindram temple. When he joined an ashram run by V. V. S. Aiyar at Cheranmadevi, he found that Dalits and ‘upper-caste’ students were fed in separate halls. He supported Periyar’s protest against this practice and quit the ashram. Later, he took charge of an ashram funded by a philanthropist in Siruvayal near Karaikkudi. The ashram life gave him an opportunity to read a lot of books. In this ashram, he got opportunity to meet Gandhi.
 When Periyar (Periyar E. V. Ramasamy), on returning from a visit to the Soviet Union, spoke highly of its achievements and expressed his desire to propagate socialism, Jeevanandham, who was by then familiar with the egalitarian principle, felt elated. His hopes of getting the national movement merged with the Congress Socialist Party were dashed when Periyar began dragging his feet. He, however, remained in the Congress. He was elected as a member of the All India Congress Committee, a prestigious post in those days, and was also a member of the working committee of the State Congress unit. Later, when the Madras Provincial Congress Socialist Party was formed in 1937, Jeevanandham became its first secretary. He joined the Communist Party of India (CPI) two years later along with P. Ramamurthi, another veteran of the movement
The last 25 years of colonial rule saw the emergence of two movements in Tamil Nadu – the Self-Respect Movement (which was a precursor to the Dravidian movement led by Periyar) and the Communist movement. Before enrolling himself as the first member of the united CPI in Tamil Nadu, Jeevanandham was an active participant in these two earlier movements. His patriotism took him to the national movement; his revulsion toward untouchability and caste-based discrimination led him to support the Self-Respect Movement.
      After joining the CPI, Jeevanandham and Ramamurthi organized rickshaw-pullers and factory workers on Marxist lines. In this they were assisted by leaders such as M. R. Venkatraman and B. Srinivasa Rao. They had already organized workers and formed unions in industrial towns such as Madurai and Coimbatore when they were functioning as socialists. Jeevanandham was in the forefront of efforts to build a strong labor movement based on Marxism. His oratory and writings helped him fulfill the task. But these leaders suffered police repression and were imprisoned several times. Jeevanandham visited sensitive areas and kept the workers’ fighting spirit alive. Alongside industrial workers, agricultural laborers and small farmers were also organized in Thanjavur and other districts. Jeevanandham and Ramamurthi inspired thousands of people through powerful speeches.
Under the colonial rule, Marxist literature and propaganda were banned, and Marxist workers were frequently arrested on one pretext or the other. Jeevanandham was no exception. He even had an externment order against him and had to stay away from the then Madras province for a brief period.
After Indian Independence, the ban on the CPI was lifted, and all its leaders were released.
In the first general elections in post independent India, Jeevanandham won a seat for the Legislative Assembly from the Wasermanpet constituency in Madras. P. Ramamurthi, his close associate, who was in jail then, was also elected from the Madurai constituency. After being elected to the Legislative Assembly, he put pressure on the government to initiate action on issues relating to development schemes and reform measures. He also led many struggles, one of which was against the proposal to form Dakshina Pradesh comprising the four southern states. Despite his loss in the subsequent elections, he continued his party work.[
           He played a key role in making his native Tamil language an official language in the state and the judiciary, and a medium of instruction in educational institutions.
He was a supporter of pure usage of Tamil, which had, to an extent, become corrupted by the influence of Sanskrit and other languages. He declared his name to be "Uyirinban", a literal translation of the Sanskrit word Jeevanandham. One of his major influences was the works of the Tamil poet Subramania Bharati, and also Bharati's persona and simple lifestyle. Jeevanandham was the first to take to cultural politics and cited his long struggle for nationalising Subramania Bharati’s songs.
He was well-versed in Tamil literature and was a good orator.
Jeevanandham was the founder of Thamara, a Tamil literary magazine. The Communist Tamil newspaper JanaSakthi was also begun with his commitment.
Periyar encouraged Jeeva to translate Bhagat Singh’s classic essay "Why I am an Atheist" in 1933. He translated it into Tamil, which was probably its first-ever translation. It was published by Periyar's publication.
Jeeva led a busy and hectic life: teaching classes on Marxism for party workers, advising students to equip themselves to meet the nascent republic’s development needs, addressing literary fora on topics such as the greatness of the poet Bharati, explaining the flaws in the government’s language policy at meetings of intellectuals, and addressing factory gate meetings in support of workers on strike. In between, he wrote editorials for the party daily or discussed strategies for resolving industrial disputes.
In 1962, his health suffered a setback. Later in the year he visited the Soviet Union. He took treatment there and returned by the end of the year. However, his health worsened weeks later. On 18 January 1963, he died at his modest home at Tambaram, near Chennai. About two lakh (200,000) people attended his funeral and paid their last respects to one who had toiled all his life for the common man, who symbolised the simplicity of Gandhism and who had a Periyar-like zest for social equality and the Marxist spirit to fight exploitation.


                                    
                                           Thillaiyadi VALLIAMMAI
                                                     YOUNG CRUSADER
    
Thillaiyadi Valliammai (22 February 1898 - 22 February 1914) was a South African Tamil woman who worked with Mahatma Gandhi in her early years when she developed her nonviolent methods in South Africa fighting its apartheid regime.
She was born to R. Munuswamy Mudaliar and Mangalam, a young immigrant couple from a small village called Thillaiyadi in Nagappatinam near Mayiladuthurai in India to Johannesburg – the gold-city of South Africa to work for their way out of difficulty. Her father was a trader and owner of a confectionery shop. Since her mother Janaki is from Thillaiyadi in Tamil Nadu, her daughter Valliammai came to be popularly called Thillaiyadi Valliammai. Valliammai had never been to India. She grew in an environment that was rather hostile to Indians. But the young child did not even know that it was not right to be segregated so,until she was in her early teens.
 A law was passed that any marriage that is not according to the Church or according to the marriage law of South Africa would be held null and void, which disproportionately affected the Indian community in that country. Doubts regarding of inheritance arose. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi began his opposition. Young Valliammai joined her mother in the march by women from Transvaal to Natal – which was not legally permitted without passes.
          Valliamma, and her mother Mangalam, joined the second batch of Transvaal women who went to Natal in October 1913 to explain the inequity of the three pound tax to the workers and persuade them to strike. (Valliamma’s father, R. Munuswamy Mudaliar, owner of a fruit and vegetable shop in Johannesburg and a satyagrahi in the Transvaal, was recovering from an operation). They visited different centres and addressed meetings. They were sentenced in December to three months with hard labour, and sent to the Maritzburg prison. Valliamma fell ill soon after her conviction, but refused an offer of early release by the prison authorities. She died shortly after release, on 22 February 1914.
          Gandhi wrote in Satyagraha in South Africa: “Valliamma R. Munuswami Mudaliar was a young girl of Johannesburg only sixteen years of age. She was confined to bed when I saw her. As she was a tall girl, her emaciated body was a terrible thing to behold.
‘Valliamma, you do not repent of your having gone to jail?’ I asked.
‘Repent? I am even now ready to go to jail again if I am arrested,’ said Valliamma.
“But what if it results in your death?’ I pursued.
‘I do not mind it. Who would not love to die for one’s motherland?’ was the reply.
“Within a few days after this conversation Valliamma was no more with us in the flesh, but she left us the heritage of an immortal name…. And the name of Valliamma will live in the history of South African Satyagraha as long as India lives.”
On 15 July 1914, three days before he left South Africa, Gandhi attended the unveiling of the gravestones of Nagappan and Valliamma in the Braamfontein cemetery in Johannesburg.




                                                  Thiruppur KUMARAN   
                                                        YOUNG  CRUSADER   


Tiruppur Kumaran   who was a famous freedom fighter in Tamil Nadu and he was born on 04-10-1904 in the small down named as Chennimalai in Tiruppur District of Tamil Nadu. He was popularly known as Tiruppur Kumaran   He involved himself in the Indian freedom movement in his young age and he participated in many struggles in the Indian freedom movement.
Tiruppur Kumaran had played a major vital role in the Indian freedom movement. He started "Desa Bandhu Youth Association" by grouping the youths and young persons from Tamilnadu to struggle against the British government to get freedom. Many persons got inspire and involved in the freedom struggle with Tiruppur Kumaran.
 He conducted many protest march against the British government in many places of Tamil Nadu. He got more inspiration from the father our Nation Mahatma Gandhi. He followed the procedures and methods which was suggested by Gandhiji in the Indian freedom movement. Tiruppur Kumaran had also participated in Congress movement from the Tiruppur's contribution. 
         The Tamil Nadu people are always remembering the contribution of Tiruppur Kumaran for the freedom of India by conducting various functions and programmes by the name of Tiruppur Kumaran. A memorial statue for Tiruppur Kumaran was erected in the park which is very near to Tiruppur Railway station. There is a street by his name which is called as "Kumaran Salai". There is also a college in his name in Tiruppur and it is called as "Tiruppur Kumaran College". The Government of India had released a commemorative stamp in his name on October 2004 during the 100th birth anniversary of Tiruppur Kumaran.
The great and famous freedom fighter of Tamil Nadu, Tiruppur Kumaran died on 11th January, 1932. His dead was very cruel that the Police assaulted him during the protest against the British colonial government. He was so patriotic that he died by holding the National flag of India which was banned by the British government. He is also called as "Kodi Kaththa Kumaran" due to this incident.


                                            Thiyagi S S VISWANATHA DAS
                                                          ARTIST CRUSADER

The last day of 1940 was a day like no other in the history of Tamil stage. The scene of action was the famed Salt Cotaurs theatre (Royal Theatre) on Wall Tax road. The play being staged that day was the famous Valli Thirumanam. A huge crowd had gathered in great expectation, for although the play had been staged several times earlier by various troupes, they had come to watch and cheer the man playing the role of Lord Muruga, S.S.Viswanatha Das. He had captured their imagination with his wonderful voice and had used the stage to good effect to arouse the patriotic fervour and spread the ideals of the freedom movement in them. Little did they anticipate what was in store.
Born into a family from the Maruthuvar community of Sivakasi on 16th June 1886, Viswanatha Das started acting at an early age, learning the craft from the legendary Sankaradas Swamigal. Having first donned the grease paint at the age of 8, Viswanatha Das established himself as an actor of repute and by the age of 14 had made a name for himself performing both Rajapart and Sthreepart. He was blessed with a melodious voice, which he put to good effect to attract huge crowds.
A meeting with Mahatma Gandhi in Tuticorin in 1911 led to Viswanatha Das involving himself actively in the freedom struggle. Invited to sing the prayer songs at the public meetings, Viswanatha Das was soon drawn into the movement by Gandhiji, who was captivated by his voice. Das accepted the offer and took to wearing khadi and also ensured that the character he was playing on stage too wore khadi. It was thus not uncommon to see him don the roles of Lord Muruga or Kovalan dressed in Khadi! He would also include patriotic songs penned by the likes of Madhurakavi Bhaskaradas in his plays. With other troupes following suit, this soon became a common occurrence and idea of using the stage to stoke the fire of patriotism gained momentum. Viswanatha Das traveled to places such as Singapore, Burma, Malaysia and Sri Lanka with his group, the “Shanmukhanandam Drama Troupe” and spread the message of the movement through his plays and songs.
His active participation in the movement meant that he was never far away from trouble. It was commonplace for the police to wait at the venue where Viswanatha Das was performing and arrest him as soon as he sang patriotic songs. Legend has it that he was arrested 29 times in the 29 years since he first met Mahatma Gandhi, with legendary figures like V.O.Chidambaram and Muthuramalinga Thevar often appearing to bail him out.
With nothing to fall back on for finance save theatre, Viswanatha Das was regularly under financial strain. In 1940, his ancestral property in Thirumangalam, Madurai had to be given up for auction due to his inability to repay loans raised on it. It was at this time that he was contracted for staging three plays in Madras. With a hope of raising some money to save the house, Viswanatha Das left for Madras, unaware that it was to be his last visit.
The crowd (and the police) waited with bated breath as the play started. Seated on a peacock, and dressed in full regalia, Viswanatha Das entered to thunderous applause singing “Maaya Vaazhve im mannmeedhe”. That was as far as he got. With a sudden seizure, he collapsed and lay motionless on stage. The police converged to control the chaos that ensued and doctors were summoned to attend on Viswanatha Das. They arrived and pronounced him dead from a massive heart attack.
As the news of Das’s demise spread, huge crowds thronged the theatre to pay their last respects to the man who had given them so much of joy with his singing and exploits on stage. The owner of the theatre, Cunniah Wodaiyar declared the place closed for further shows as a mark of respect to the great personality. On 1st of January 1941, huge crowds joined the funeral procession that started from the theatre and reached the Moolakothalam cemetery, where he was consigned to the flames at around 7 PM.
Today, Viswanatha Das is a distant footnote in the annals of the freedom movement in Tamilnadu. Save for a statue near his native town, Thirumangalam and his house (which was demolished and converted into a memorial cum marriage hall recently), there is little to perpetuate his memory today.

Thanks to -Tamil stage

 
                                           V O CHIDAMBARAM 
                                   KAPPALOTTIYA TAMILAR 
  
V. O. Chidambaram Pillai, popularly known by his initials V.O.C, was one of the most prominent lawyers in 19th century British India. While V. O. Chidambaram Pillai provided a strong leadership to trade unions functioning in his native state Tamil Nadu and also fought for India's freedom from the British, he is best remembered as the man who set up the first indigenous shipping service between Tuticorin and Colombo. Owing to V. O. Chidambaram Pillai's rebellious attitude and his courage to act against the British government, the English stripped the title of barrister associated with his name. It was his brave nature that won V.O.C the name 'Kappalottiya Tamilian' in Tamil Nadu, which translates to 'The Tamil Helmsman' in English.
Childhood and Legal Career
V. O. Chidambaram Pillai was born on September 5, 1872 in the town of Ottapidaram in Tuticorin district of Tamil Nadu. His father Olaganathan Pillai was one of the most important lawyers of the country and it was in his father's footsteps that V.O.C followed after completion of his education. V. O. Chidambaram Pillai enrolled in schools in his native Ottapidaram and nearby Tirunelveli. V.O.C started working in the Ottapidaram district administrative office after the end of his school education. It was only a few years later that he enrolled in law school and completed law studies to become a lawyer like his father Olaganathan Pillai. Though his father was his biggest inspiration in the profession of law, there was a basic difference in the working styles of V. O. Chidambaram Pillai and Olaganathan Pillai. While his father catered to the problems of only the affluent in the society, V.O.C was sympathetic towards the poor people whose cases he sometimes took up against the wishes of his influential father. A case in which V O Chidambaram Pillai proved that three sub-magistrates in Tamil Nadu were guilty of corruption charges won him attention and fame as a lawyer.
Career in Politics
V. O. Chidambaram Pillai entered into active politics in the year 1905 by becoming a member of the Indian National Congress. The Swadeshi movement in India was already at its hilt during this time and leaders like Lala Lajpat Rai and Bal Gangadhar Tilak were trying their best to put an end to British Imperial coercion of trade. The same cause which would also ensure the safety of traditional Indian industries and communities dependent on them was being championed by Aurobindo Ghosh, Subramanya Siva and Subramanya Bharathi through the Madras Presidency.       V.O.C then decided to join the Indian National Congress and fight along with other members of the Madras Presidency.
He later presided over the Salem District session of the INC.Shipping Company After joining the Indian National Congress, V. O. Chidambaram Pillai wholeheartedly immersed himself into Swadeshi work to secure independence for India. Part of his Swadeshi work was to put an end to the monopoly of British shipping in the coasts of Ceylon. Inspired by freedom fighter Ramakrishnananda, he set up the Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company on November 12, 1906. With the help of other Swadeshi members Aurobindo Ghosh and Bal Gangadhar Tilak, V.O.C bought two steamships S. S. Gaelia and S. S. Lawoe to start his shipping company. Much to the annoyance of the British government and British traders, V.O.C's ships started regular services between Tuticorin and Colombo. His shipping company was not only a commercial venture, it was also the first comprehensive shipping service set up by an Indian in British India.
The Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company gave stiff competition to the British India Steam Navigation Company, due to which the latter had to reduce fares per trip. While V.O.C responded by reducing his rates even further than that of the British India Steam Navigation Company, he could not afford their tactics of offering free rides and umbrellas to passengers, thus taking the Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company on the verge of bankruptcy.
Nationalistic Spirit
V. O. Chidambaram Pillai aimed at expanding the reach of Swadeshi in the country and making the common Indian man aware of the faulty British government. It is for this purpose that V.O.C took the support of workers of Coral Mills in Tirunelveli. The British authorities had already taken a disliking towards Pillai and this act compelled them to arrest V.O.C on March 12, 1908 on charges of sedition against the government. Violence erupted in the state after the arrest of V.O.C. Clashes between police and common men followed, leading to the death of four people. Though his actions were vehemently condemned by British authorities, V.O.C got the support of the press in the country which praised his nationalistic spirit elaborately.
While the British were trying their best to prosecute V.O.C, Indians in the country as well as in South Africans were accumulating funds to free him from prison.     Mahatma Gandhi, then staying in South Africa, also had collected money and sent it to India to fund the defense of V O C. After his arrest, Pillai was housed at the Central Prison in Coimbatore from July 9, 1908 to December 1, 1910. The British had slapped a sentence of life imprisonment on V.O.C, clearly indicating that they were afraid of his rebellious spirit. During his days in prison, V O Chidambaram Pillai did not receive the treatment shown to other political prisoners; rather he was made to engage in hard labor in prison just like other convicts.
The hard work took a toll on his health and the gradual deterioration of his condition forced the British authorities to release him from prison on December 12, 1912. While in prison, V O Chidambaram Pillai continued with his Swadeshi activities through legal petitions. Cruel circumstances struck him when V O Chidambaram Pillai was released from prison. Instead of a large gathering of supporters which he had expected in front of the jail gates, there was an eerie silence. The title of barrister was taken away from him, meaning that V.O.C could not practice law anymore. The Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company was also liquidated in the year 1911, so V.O.C was left a poor man. V O Chidambaram Pillai settled in Madras with his wife and two children and became the leader of various trade unions and labor welfare organizations in Madras. In the year 1920, V O Chidambaram Pillai presided over the Calcutta session of the Indian National Congress.
 Literary Works
Apart from his works as an eminent lawyer and a politician, V O Chidambaram Pillai was also a scholar. He started his autobiography while in prison and completed it soon after his release in the year 1912. V O Chidambaram Pillai was the author of a couple of novels; he translated several James Allen works in Tamil and made compilations of important Tamil works like the Thirukural and the Tolkappiam.
 Personal Life
V O Chidambaram Pillai married Valliammai in the year 1895, but she died prematurely in the year 1901. He married Meenakshi Ammiar a few years later. The couple had four sons and four daughters. His eldest son died when still a child, the second son was a politician, the third son was the employee of the American Embassy in Madras and the fourth son, still alive is settled in Madurai. All his daughters had been married in Madras.

The descendants of V.O.C Pillai still live in various places across Tamil Nadu.DeathV O Chidambaram Pillai spent such an impoverished lifestyle after he was released from prison that Justice Wallace who sentenced V O C to prison restored his bar license. But V O C was never successful in repaying his debts and lived in poverty till the end of his life on November 18, 1936. V O Chidambaram Pillai breathed his last at the Indian National Congress office in Tuticorin.



                                                        V V S IYAR
                                                             THIAGI PATRIOT

Varahaneri Venkatesa Subramaniam Aiyar was born to a middle class family of Tiruchi on 2 April 1881. He was 44 years old when he died on 3 June 1925.  It was a relatively short life. He will be remembered both as an early Tamil revolutionary and as the father of the modern Tamil short story. R.A. Padmanabhan writes in his biography of V.V.S.Aiyar: 
          "It has been said that the all round revival of the Tamil country in the first two decades of the century owes much to three brilliant sons of Tamil Nadu, Poet C.Subramania Bharathi, Scholar-Revolutionary V.V.S.Aiyar and Swadeshi Steamship hero, V.O.Chidambaram Pillai. They were all dedicated patriots working with a passion, each in his chosen field for the liberation of Bharatmata. All the three were imbued with a strong love of the Tamil language and the culture of the Tamil people. Each contributed his own quota to boost the self esteem of the Tamils... Whilst the names of Bharathi and Chidambaram Pillai are familiar to present day India, it cannot be said that it is equally familiar with the name of V.V.S.Aiyar."
Subramaniam passed the Pleader's Examination in Madras in the First Grade in 1902 and thereafter practised as a Pleader in the District Court of Tiruchi. In 1906, he went to Rangoon, and practised as a junior in the Chambers of an English Barrister whose clientele included a number of Tamil businessmen who were resident in Burma. From Rangoon, he left for London in 1907, enrolled in Lincoln's Inn with a view to becoming a Barrister at Law. It was in London, that V.V.S.Aiyar together with Vinayak Damodar Sarvakar, began to take an active role in the militant struggle for Indian independence.
In 1910, Aiyar resigned his membership of Lincoln's Inn. A warrant was issued by the British for his arrest and Aiyar escaped to Paris. But he had no wish to remain in Paris as a political exile. He returned to India, albeit to French Pondicherry, and there met with both Subramaniya Bharathi and Aurobindo. He remained in Pondicherry for ten years until after the end of the first World War. It was during this period that he translated the whole of the Thirukural into English. In his Preface to the Second Edition of his 'Maxims of Thiruvalluvar', Aiyar declares the reasons that led him to write::
 "When, soon after the Great War broke out, the (German battleship) Emden was scouring the Bay of Bengal, some members of the secret police force stationed by the British Indian Government at Pondicherry to watch the movements of the Indian refugees thought it a golden opportunity to rise in the service by connecting the latter with the activities of the Emden. It is said that as a result of their plot, the Madras Government desired the then Governor of Pondicherry to banish the Indian political refugees to Africa. Anyway, the French police brought several charges against these refugees among whom was Shriman Aiyar. These cases, however, failed ignominiously. In spite of that, the then Governor of Pondicherry wished to deport them to Algeria. He however, wanted that it should not appear that he forced them to leave Pondicherry. He, therefore sent messengers to them who threatened them unofficially with all sorts of dire consequences if they did not voluntarily leave for Algiers. The negotiation lasted for about four or five months. As soon as the negotiation started, Shriman Aiyar thought that the French Government might any day force him out of Pondicherry, and wanted to leave something behind him which might keep his memory green among his countrymen even though his body should be removed by force out of the Tamil land which he loved so dearly.
He therefore set about to think as to what would be the best thing for him to do under these circumstances, taking into consideration the very short and precarious period of time at his disposal.
 It did not take him long to decide that if he could translate into English the shortest and at the same time the most perfect of the ancient Tamil classics, he could claim a small corner in the memory of his countrymen.
He therefore set to work at it at top speed.  It was about the 1st of November, 1914 that he put pen on paper. Day after day he pounded away at the translation, every evening thinking that the next morning he might receive a peremptory order to leave Pondicherry. This sword of Damocles ever hanging above his head only made him determined to work at white heat, so that in case he had to leave India he might leave as large a number as possible of the maxims worthily translated. He went on with his translation with so much ardour that even while his house was being searched by the French police for discovering if he had concealed in his house a fugitive from justice, he put his hand to the translation the moment the police left his study to search the other parts of his house. He was a happy man when on the 1st of March 1915 the last lines of the preface were fair copied and the whole book was ready for the press..."
After the end of World War I, V.V.S.Aiyar returned to Chennai and functioned as the Editor of the journal Desabhaktan. In September 1921 he was arrested for sedition and sentenced to 9 months imprisonment. And it was in prison that V.V.S.Aiyar wrote his magnum opus - a study of Kamban's Ramayana.
V.V.S.Aiyar drowned in the Papanasam Falls in June 1925 in circumstances which remain controversial. On his death, Vinayak Damodar Sarvakar, Aiyar's comrade in arms, paid a moving tribute in the journal, Mahratta:
"Heavy griefs have often embittered our life; but none heavier than what thy sudden death caused, oh friend, ever taxed our capacity to endure. Memories of those momentous years and trying days rise in a flood and, struggling to find a vent, keep knocking at the gates of our heart. How we wish we could have spoken of them all and recited our reminiscences. But our lips must remain sealed. How we long to write of the goodness and gentleness of disposition - how when betrayed thou stood unshaken, how thou served them who owned thee not and how thou suffered when unbeknown and modest, and made not the slightest mention of it when thou got known - how we long to write of it all. But our pen is a broken reed.
The noble story of thy life must for the time being, nay, perhaps for all time to come, remain untold.    For while those who can recite it are living, the time to tell it may not come, and when the time comes, when all that is worth telling will no longer remain suppressed and will eagerly be listened to, the generation that could have recounted it might have passed away. Thy greatness, therefore, must stand undimmed but unwitnessed by man like the lofty Himalayan peaks. Thy services and sacrifices must lie buried in oblivion as do the mighty foundations of a mighty castle.
       The news of thy sudden death was bitter enough. But bitterer by far is this, our inability to relate to posterity under what heavy obligations thou hast placed them and to express the fullness of our personal and public grief.
       For indeed he was a pillar of strength, a Hindu of Hindus, and in him our Hindu race has lost one of the most exalted representatives and perfect flower of our Hindu civilisation - ripe in experience, and mellowed by sufferings and devoted to the service of men and God, the cause of the Hindu Sanghatan was sure to find in him one of its best and foremost champions in Madras.
          In 1907 or somewhere there, one day the maid-servant at the famous India House in London handed a visiting card to us as we came downstairs to dine and told us a gentleman was waiting in the drawing room. Presently the door was flung open and a gentleman, neatly dressed in European costume and inclined to be fashionable, warmly shook hands with us. He told us he had been a pleader at Rangoon and had come over to England to qualify himself as a full-fledged barrister. He was past thirty and seemed a bit agreeably surprised to find us so young. He assured us of his intention to study English music and even assured us that he was eager to get a few lessons in dancing as well. We, as usual, entered our mild protest against thus dissipating the energy of our youth in light-hearted pastimes when momentous issues hung in the balance. The gentleman, unconvinced, though impressed, took our leave promising to continue to call upon us every now and then. He was Srijut V.V.S. Aiyar.
        In 1910, somewhere in March, we stood as a prisoner, then only very recently pent up in Brixton, the formidable prison in London. The warder announced visits; anxiously we accompany the file of prisoners to the visiting yard. We stand behind the bars wondering who could have come to call on us and thus invite the unpleasant attention of the London Police. For to acknowledge our acquaintance from the visitor's box in front of the prison bars was a sure step to eventually get behind them. Presently one dignified figure enters the box in front of us. It was V.V.S. Aiyar. His beard was closely waving on his breast. He was unkempt.
He was no longer the neatly dressed fashionable gentleman. His whole figure was transformed with some great act of dedication of life. 'Oh leader !' he feelingly accosted us, 'Why did you leave Paris at all !' We soothingly said, 'What is the use of discussing it here? Rightly or not I am here, pent up in this prison, and the best way now is to see what is to be done next, how to face the present.'
        While fully discussing the future plans, the bell rang and the warders came rushing and shouting unceremoniously, 'Time up !' With a heavy heart we looked into each other's eyes. We knew it would perhaps be the last time we ever saw each other in this life. Tears rose. Suppressing them, we said, 'No ! we are Hindus. We have read the Gita. We must not weep in the presence of these unsympathetic crowds.' .. We parted. I watched till he disappeared and said to my mind, 'Alas ! It is well nigh impossible to see this loving soul again.
 For one of two fates was certain to fall to my lot, the gallows or the Andamans and neither could hold any prospect before me of seeing my friends again.
 This was in 1910. Fourteen years rolled by, and the impossible actually happened. Travelling the most dangerous and meandering by-paths and by-lanes and subterranean passages of life, so formidably bordering the realms of death, I met Srijut Aiyar a couple of months ago. He had travelled all the distance from Madras to Bombay to enable us to revel a few hours in the wine of romantic joy. We forgot for a while the bitterness and the keen pangs of the afflicted and the tortured past and lightly gossiped as boys fresh from school meeting after a long holiday. He took my leave.
I watched him disappear and said to my mind 'Now I can call him again any time I like.'
      Little I knew then that he was to disappear beyond all human recall. When human wisdom shook its head and snorted out 'Impossible!', events proved it possible and when it gaily assured itself, 'At any time,' Destiny put in a stern 'Never!' Thus our Fate seems to act with no nobler intention than to mock and humiliate human calculations!
     With Aiyar the politician we cannot concern ourselves here. It is the loss of Aiyar, the scholar, the friend, the noblest type of a Hindu gentleman, the author of Kural (in translation), the saintly soul whose life has been one continuous sacrifice and worship, that we so bitterly bewail today and bitterly chafe at our inability to pay a public tribute to his memory in a fashion worthy of the noble dead.
Oh, the times on which our generation has fallen! The noblest sink down and are washed off to the shores of death, while the unworthy keep gaily swimming on the tides of life.
      But thou hast done thy duty, friend! It was for Human Love that thou lived, and died too for human love as martyr unto her.
      Thou knew no peace in life, oh Soldier of God. But peace be with thee in Death. Oh friend, peace be with thee and divine rest!"




                                                 VAIDYNATHA IYAR A
                             RELIGIOUS CUM SOCIAL REFORMER

Vaidyanatha Iyer was born on 16 May 1890 at Vishnampettai village, Thanjavur district, in then Madras Presidency as the second of eight children in a Tamil brahmin family to Arunachalam Iyer and Lakshmi Ammal
  Arunachalam Iyer served as Mathematics teacher in Pudukkottai Maharaja’s school. After retirement he settled down in Madurai with his family.
AV Iyer studied in Madurai Sethupathi High School, where he was dear to all teachers. He had an unblemished track record as a distinguished student throughout his education. In the year 1909, AV Iyer completed his SSLC, standing second in the state for overall performance and topping in mathematics. For these he was awarded a gold medal by the school.
Later, AV Iyer completed his FA in Madura College, again topping in mathematics and securing the fourth rank at the state level. He was awarded the prestigious Neelakanda Sastri gold medal along as well as the Fisher gold medal by the college.
At the age of 18, right after his FA examinations, Iyer’s parents conducted his marriage with 9 year old Akilandam, who remained a perfect partner to him throughout his life.Iyer completed his BA with first class in the year 1914 from Madras Presidency College.
He served as a teacher for a year at Bishop Heber Higher Secondary School in Trichy and for a year at Masoolipattinam Hindu Higher Secondary School, before qualifying himself in law and acquiring the status of Pleader.
AV Iyer started his practice as a Junior under Mr. Natesa Iyer, a well-known lawyer in Madurai. Within a year Natesa Iyer realized AV Iyer’s abilities and encouraged him to start his own law practice. Natesa Iyer treated AV Iyer like his own son and wished him well and they continued to be in constant touch.
AV Iyer started his practice and appeared for cases in the courts of Madurai, Pudukottai and Tirunelveli. He took on only genuine cases and was sensitive to people’s needs. He saw to it that the client’s money and time were spent meaningfully. Very soon he gained a good reputation in his own circle as well as with the public.
The points of law raised by Iyer and his arguments often astounded even the judges and received their praise. Iyer’s fame spread and cases started piling up. His earnings multiplied. He selflessly took care to train his juniors to make them more competent. As the saying goes, ‘a true leader makes more leaders’. Iyer also treated his juniors with affection and as members of his own family.
Active Participation in Freedom Struggle
While studying in Madras Presidency College, Iyer was inspired by the widespread patriotism in the nation. Motivated by the articles and speeches of national leaders, Iyer involved himself directly in the freedom struggle.
One day Iyer attended a public speech by national leader Bipin Chander Pal at Chennai beach. When this news reached the Principal of the college, who was British, Iyer was punished by being made to stand up on a bench from morning till evening for two weeks. Iyer went through the punishment with calmness and great resolve
Mahatma Gandhi visited Madurai for the first time in 1919. During his second visit on 22 September 1921, Gandhiji dramatically connected with the local farmers by draping a small dhoti around his waist just like them. His address to the public inspired numerous young attendees who later became leaders and social activists. Iyer was one among them.
In 1920, when Gandhiji announced the Non-Cooperation Movement, Iyer wanted to leave his lucrative practice as a lawyer and join the Indian National Congress as a full-time worker. Chittaranjan Das, who was touring South India with Gandhiji, suggested to Iyer that he could continue his legal practice and also involve himself part time in the Indian National Congress, inspiring the youth and more volunteers to join the party. From that day onwards, Iyer managed the twin challenges of being an advocate as well as a political and social activist.
Following the Non-Cooperation Movement, Gandhiji requested volunteers to take part in activities like Khadi promotion, Hindu-Muslim cooperation, Dalit empowerment and the abolishment of alcohol. Volunteers started promoting Khadi cloth in Madurai and Iyer introduced the hand-spinning wheel for making handspun Khadi cloth in Madurai and the villages nearby.
Iyer visited numerous villages, talked to the villagers about Khadi and guided them in the production of Khadi cloth. With the help of young volunteers, he carried Khadi clothes on his own shoulders to boost the sale of Khadi.As a result, in 1924, Madurai district topped the entire state in Khadi manufacture and sales. Despite several hurdles and problems, Iyer carried on the Khadi movement tirelessly.
The then Tamil Nadu Congress leader Dr. S. Varadarajalu Naidu presented the prestigious silver hand-spinning wheel to Madurai district for standing first in the manufacture of Khadi. The credit for this goes mainly to Iyer.
Parallel to the Khadi movement, Iyer spread education and strove to abolish untouchability in Madurai and its neighbouring villages. Iyer fought for the cause even before the formation of the Harijan Sevak Sangh and other such social reformist Institutions.
In December 1929, the annual Indian National Congress Conference was held in Lahore, presided over by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. At this conference, it was decided that attaining complete independence was the primary objective of the party. Following this, talks started between Gandhiji and the British government. Gandhiji requested the British to withdraw the salt laws. The British government rejected his pleas. Hence, Gandhiji decided to conduct the Salt March from Sabarmathi Ashram to Dandi.
Rajaji met Iyer in Madurai to discuss how to implement this decision on the Salt March in the southern region. At the end of the discussion, it was decided that in South India, the march would start from Tiruchirappalli and end at Vedaranyam. It was planned that the preparation of salt would take place at Vedaranyam. The details of the march were planned and finalized by Iyer.
At the end of the Dandi March, Gandhiji was arrested by the British government for breaking the salt law and imprisoned for six years. Despite the hurdles caused by British government, the march in South India started on 13 April 1930 at Tiruchi and ended 15 days later at Vedaranyam. Rajaji, who made salt there, was arrested and put in jail. The British government enforced Section 144 all over India.
As instructed by Rajaji, Iyer did not participate in the procession. Instead, he went along with Rajaji as an observer. After Rajaji’s arrest Iyer and other leaders continued the Salt March ignoring the ban orders Sec. 144.
While Iyer was addressing a public meeting, the police suddenly entered the place and tried to disperse the crowd. They attacked the crowd with flogger batons. They also attacked Iyer, pushed him off the stage and dragged him for nearly a furlong (about 200 m) on the ground. A little later, those arrested were taken to Tiruchirappalli by lorry and imprisoned for six months. Iyer was released from prison only after the Gandhi-Irwin Pact was signed in 1931.
In 1932, Gandhiji re-started the civil disobedience movement. Following this, Iyer led the anti-liquor campaign and the boycott of foreign goods in Madurai. Iyer bore the expenses incurred for these campaigns out of his own personal earnings.
Gandhiji was arrested and imprisoned. Protesting Gandhiji’s arrest, a public meeting was organized in Madurai. As Iyer was speaking at the meeting, police entered and read out Section 144. Iyer was arrested for condemning the act of the police. The court ordered one year’s imprisonment in Vellore jail and a fine of Rs 500 for Iyer. The police decided to auction his car to recover the fine amount. But nobody from the public came forward to buy Iyer’s car when it was put on auction. This incident is a clear indication of the public’s love and respect for Iyer.

Coming to know that the Congress Committee of Madurai did not have enough funds to continue the civil disobedience protests, Iyer, before leaving for Vellore jail, made arrangements through one of his trustworthy men to sell some of his family jewels to raise funds and continue the protests. But instead of being sold, they were pawned for Rs 7000/-. They were later recovered with Iyer’s personal income.
The economy was bad during the Second World War and it impacted the manufacture of handmade Khadi. Families involved in the business languished in poverty. Iyer used his personal earnings and arranged for food and medical help for the affected families. Iyer continued helping them until their business came back to normalcy.
At the same time, clashes started between Hindus and Muslims in various parts of the country, following the call given by Mohammed Ali Jinnah and his supporters demanding a separate nation for Muslims.
Iyer’s contribution towards Hindu–Muslim unity was extraordinary.
In 1940, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru was arrested and jailed in Kashmir. The people of Madurai protested and closed their shops in protest. At that time, due to some rumours spread by mischief-mongers, Hindus and Muslims gathered with weapons at the junction of South Masi Street and West Masi Street. On hearing this, Iyer immediately went to the spot and pleaded with both sides to calm down by falling on the ground with folded hands. The angry crowd slowly calmed down and dispersed. Thus, a major clash was averted by the brave, timely and Gandhian intervention of Iyer.
During the Congress Committee meeting at Pune in 1940, Gandhiji called for individuals to take part in Satyagraha. Iyer led the Satyagraha in Madurai. He selected the volunteers for the Satyagraha and sent them to participate in the protest.
Iyer’s wife Akilandam Ammal too was sent as volunteer. She was arrested and imprisoned for three months in Vellore Jail. On 8 August 1942, Gandhiji announced the ‘Quit India’ Movement at the Indian National Congress public meeting in Bombay. The British government was enraged and jailed Gandhiji and several other leaders. Curfew was imposed all over India.

On hearing this, an incensed Iyer organized a public meeting at Thilakar Ground in Madurai, breaking the curfew. Police lathi-charged and fired at the people. Several lost their lives. Many more were injured. Iyer was arrested for breaking the curfew and for instigating people to protest against the British government. He was sent to the Alipore Jail.
While Iyer was still in jail, his eldest son died. The news reached Iyer two weeks later. Iyer came out on parole and performed the last rites for his eldest son. Before the end of his parole period, Iyer had his elder daughter Sulochana married.
After six months, Iyer was released from Alipore Jail. But he was arrested at the entrance of the jail and taken to Thanjavur Jail and later moved to Vellore Jail. In 1945, as part of a general amnesty, Iyer was released from jail and he continued his occupation as an advocate.
Iyer continuously strove for cooperation between Hindus and Muslims in Madurai district. Like Gandihiji Iyer too did not like the formation of a separate country called Pakistan. However, the country was split into two – India and Pakistan. India attained independence on 15 August 1947. Though the whole country celebrated the occasion, the joy of leaders like Gandhiji and Iyer was tinged with sorrow at the division of the country.
                                                          Vanchi NATHAN 
                                                          EXTREMIST PATRIOT

Vanchinathan, the young freedom fighter
Indian historians have always had selective memory. To them, the four cities of Shahjahanabad(Delhi), Mumbaai(Mumbai), Mahishur(Mysore) and Kalikata(Kolkata) form the boundaries of the country. Many a men have lost their place in Indian history due to this geopolitical blindness. One such man is Vanchinathan.
Personal  life:
     Vanchinathan was born into a Brahmin family in 1886 in the southernmost corner of the country. Sengottai, the town in which he was born, literally means 'Red fort' in English, but this one is not celebrated as the other one in the northern corner of the country. As a child, it is said, Vanchinathan was polite and unassuming, almost shy. He also seems to have been studious, graduating with a B.A. from Moolam Thirunal Maharaja College in Thiruvananthapuram and a M.A from Baroda university. While he was in college, he married Ponnammal with whom he fathered a daughter. After college, he was offered a clerkship in Travancore forest department which he happily took.
VOC, the inspiration:
     It was in Travancore where he was leading a happy family life, Vanchinathan came to know about V.O.Chidambaram Pillai, who was fighting the British for the rights of the oppressed. In 1906, V.O.C launched the Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company, India's first shipping enterprise which operated two steamsihps between Tuticorin and Colombo thus putting a full-stop to British monopoly in shipping in the region. A year or so later, with the help of Coral mill workers, VOC staged a Strike against the management firm A&F Harvey which was paying very low wages to its labourers. These works of VOC inspired the young man who turned into a serious follower and made the dreams of the freedom fighter his own.
     On March 12, 1908, V.O. Chidambaram Pillai was arrested for sedition and locked up in Palayamkottai. This stirred the emotions of freedom fighters in Tirunelveli and Tuticorin. Both the towns saw unprecedented agitations which was quelled with the help of a massive police force. A couple of months later, the court imposed two life sentences of 40 years each on VOC. VOC was sent to Coimbatore central prison where he spent the next two years. In 1911, Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company bankrupted and British took possession of the two steamships.
The Ashe murder:
     Between 1906 and 1908, when the two navigation companies were pitted against each other in a fierce battle, Ashe was posted in Tirunelveli/Tuticorin either in the capacity of a collector or as a district magistrate. It is said that Ashe did everything in his power to kill Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company. He also fully backed A&F Harvey throughout the protest. It is also said that Ashe issued a shoot at sight order during the agitations that followed VOC's arrest. These must be the reasons, Ashe was targeted, if he was the one targeted at all (It was the collector of Tirunelveli Mr. Winch - and not Robert Ashe - who ordered the arrest of VOC in 1908. Some claim if Vanchinathan wanted to avenge VOC's arrest, it must have been by killing Mr. Winch who was directly responsible).
        The mastermind behind the assassination was Nilakanta Bramhachari who went around the Madras presidency in 1910 recruiting cadres and hatching plots against the British.
In this venture, he was accompanied by Shankar Krishna Aiyar, Vanchinathan's brother-in-law, who introduced the men to each other. This was when Vanchinathan was initiated into militant struggle for freedom. Along with a few other men, Nilakanta Bramhachari, Vaanchinathan and Shankar Krishna Aiyar found an organisation called Bharatha Matha Sangam which plots the assassination of influential British men.
    The preparation for the murder began in early January 1911 when Vanchinathan took a three month break from his job and visited VVS Aiyar in Pondicherry. VVS Aiyar who was allegedly involved in many other conspiracies against the British trained    Vanchinathan in firing a revolver among other things.
It is said that   Vanchinathan confessed to VVS Aiyar his plans  to assassinate Ashe for his role in the arrest of VOC and the agitations that followed (could not be verified). A couple of months later, Vanchinathan's infant daughter died whose funeral he did not attend and Ashe was promoted as the acting collector of Tirunelveli.
   The stage was set. The date was decided - June 11, 1911. It was to coincide with the coronation of George V. For some reason, there was no attempt on that day. The second one was planned for June 17, 1911.
    On that day, Ashe with his wife Mary left Tirunelveli for Kodaikanal in a train to visit his childen. Vanchinathan and three others from Bharatha Matha sangam boarded the same train at Tirunelveli. At 9.30 A.M. the train reached Maniyachi. As soon as the train came to a halt, Vanchinathan boarded the first class in which Ashe and his wife were travelling. He shot Ashe with his browning, jumped out of the train and ran into the platform lavoratory. There, he shot himself to death. By the time police arrived, both Ashe and Vanchinathan were dead. The police discovered a letter in Vanchinathan's pocket signed "R. Vanchi Aiyar, Sengottai". It read:
      "The mlechas of England having captured our country, tread over the sanathana dharma of the Hindus and destroy them. Every Indian is trying to drive out the English and get swarajyam and restore sanathana dharma. Our Raman, Sivaji, Krishnan, Guru Govindan, Arjuna ruled our land protecting all dharmas and in this land they are making arrangements to crown George V, a mlecha, and one who eats the flesh of cows. Three thousand Madrasees have taken a vow to kill George V as soon as he lands in our country. In order to make others know our intention, I who am the least in the company, have done this deed this day. This is what everyone in Hindustan should consider it as his duty."
Conspiracy:
   Recently, a reverend, one Dr. Ravikumar Stephen, has proposed a theory on why Ashe was the target of the crime. He claims that Ashe's wife Mary was a social worker who helped a pregnant Dalit woman in Sengottai. Allegedly, she arranged a bullock cart for the woman who was suffering in labour pain and the bullock cart rode through the streets of Agraharam(the abode of Brahmins) which was not very well received by the Brahmins. Vaanchinathan, a Brahmin, was severely angered by this and took out his rage on the husband (However, strangely, he did not kill the wife).
     Scholars have rejected this as an attempt to discredit the martyrdom of the young man who laid down his life at the age of 25 for freedom. Also, the reverend has not produced any evidence supporting his claim. Nor has anyone stepped forward to stand by him.

Thanks to Ilavaluthy  M -this is my world.
                                                             

                                            VARADARAJULU NAIDU
                                      DOCTOR PATRIOT

Perumal Varadarajulu Naidu (June 4, 1887 - July 23, 1957) was an Indian physician, politician, journalist and Indian independence activist. Varadarajulu Naidu was born in an affluent Balija Naidu family in Rasipuram near Salem on June 4, 1887.  His father Perumal Naidu was a rich landlord. He had his early education in Madras and trained as an Ayurvedic physician.
Varadarajulu Naidu entered politics at an early age and joined the Indian National Congress. In 1917, he gave up medical practice. He participated in the Indian Home Rule Movement and was President of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee at the time of the Cheranmahadevi school controversy.
Varadarajulu joined Periyar and Kalyanasundara Mudaliar and strongly opposed the practice of separate dining for Brahman and non-Brahman students in Shermadevi Gurukulam, a national school run by V. V. S. Aiyar. The issue was brought to the notice of Gandhi and Aiyar later resigned. When the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee met in April 1925 to discuss the issue, the recommendation of C. Rajagopalachari and Rajan that Congress should not interfere and that the school should instead be advised to eliminate the practice was swept aside. The resolution which prevented gradations of merit based on birth should not be observed by nationalist parties moved by Ramanathan passed. Rajagopalachari and six of his associates resigned from TNCC citing that caste prejudices could not be overcome by coercion. However, Varadarajulu Naidu stayed on in the Congress even as Periyar left the party.
In his later years, Varadarajulu Naidu actively participated in the temple-entry movements in Madras Presidency.

Varadarajulu started the weekly Tamil newspaper Tamil Nadu in 1925. In 1931, Varadarajulu Naidu started The Indian Express but had to sell off the newspaper within a year due to financial difficulties

                                                 
                                         VIJAYA RAGHAVACHARIAR. C
                       FIRST ALL INDIA CONGRESS PRESIDENT FROM TAMIL NADU

           Salem C. Vijayaraghavachariar, as he was popularly known, was born on June 18, 1852 in an orthodox Vaishnavite Brahmin family at Pon Vilaindha Kalathur, in Chingleput district, Tamil Nadu.
His father being a purohit and steeped in religious lore, was eager to bring up his son according to orthodox traditions. At a very early age, Vijayaraghavachariar was sent to the Veda Pathshala in his village and was brought up in a tradition of memorising the Vedas. This stood him in good stead in later years.
His English education began in his twelfth year when he joined the Madras Pachaiyappa High School. He matriculated in 1870. He graduated from the Madras Presidency College in 1875. Appearing privately for the Law examination he began to practice in 1881. He was an able Advocate and a leader of the Bar at Salem.
In 1882, a short time after he set up practice at Salem there was a Hindu-Muslim riot.     Vijayaraghavachariar was implicated in the riot and charges were framed against him. He relentlessly fought the charges in the Court of Law and finally came out unscathed. Fighting the case for those implicated in the Salem riots of 1882 made Vijayaraghavachariar famous overnight. He was called ‘The Hero of Salem’ and ‘Lion of South India’.
When the Indian National Congress was started in 1885 he was one of the special invitees. He was a close associate of A. O. Hume, the founder of the Indian National Congress. He attended the Bombay session of the Congress and in 1887 he was one of the members of the committee which drafted the constitution of the Indian National Congress. From then on Vijayaraghavachariar became an ardent freedom fighter. His counsels and leadership were much sought after by the Congressmen of the early days.
In 1895, he was elected to the Madras legislative Council which he served for 6 years, till 1901. In 1913, he was elected to the Imperial Legislative Council with which he was associated till 1916. When Lord Birkenhead the Secretary of State for India threw out a challenge whether Indians could draw up a Constitution for India Vijayaraghavachariar took up the challenge and drew up the Swaraj Constitution for India.
With the advent of Mahatma Gandhi, there was a rift in the Congress ranks between the old moderates and the new radicals. Even earlier, the ideas of the moderates did not appeal to him. He kept aloof from active party work for a period after the Surat split of the Congress and later joined with redoubled vigour to carry the message of the Mahatma. The climax of his political career came when in 1920 he was elected to preside over the Indian National Congress Session at Nagpur, where Gandhi ji's advocacy of 'Poorna Swaraj' through non - violent non - cooperation was debated and accepted.
He was also in the vanguard of the opposition to the Simon Commission that toured the country in 1929. He took an active part in the Committee that met under Motilal Nehru to frame the Constitution for India.
In many aspects, Vijayaraghavachariar was much ahead of his time. He advocated post -puberty marriage for women and also the right of a daughter to have a share in her father's property. He advocated the much needed change in the Hindu law at a time when any talk about it was a taboo.
He was a champion of the Depressed Classes. He was one of the two Vice Presidents of the Madras Branch of the Passive Resistance Movement. Mahatma Gandhi was its President; the other Vice-President was G. Kasturi Ranga Iyengar, Editor of the Hindi.
He lived to the ripe old age of ninety-two. Though the diadem of leadership in South India, passed on from his hands to C. Rajagopalachari, he contented himself with giving periodic advice on matters of public importance through his regular contributions to the Madras journals.
     "It is impossible to exaggerate the importance of a written constitution. Almost all modern countries possessed of a constitutional government have written constitutions. England seems to be the only exception but only a partial exception, for her constitution is made up as well of charters and statutes as of traditions and usages preserved as common law by the line of great judges who contributed to the national freedom of England no less than her great statesmen and soldiers. I venture to submit that it is too late to think of an unwritten constitution.”
His long life had been a period of relentless struggle against Imperialism and economic and social distress. Though an anti - imperialist, he shared a lifelong friendship with some of its representatives in India, viz., Governors and Viceroys, Lord Ripon, Lord Curzon, Lord and Lady Hardinge.

The voice of the Lion of South India was stilled when he passed away on 19 April 1944. After his death, his valuable collections were treasured in the Memorial Library and Lecture Halls specially constructed and named after him.

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    1. Thank you Ranjith. We particularly young people must know about our society, then only we can develop good and just leadership.

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  2. Absolutely amazing work that you have done. Thank you very much. I was looking for some history and perspective of events in the 1920s to 1940's, this very much helps me, thank you very much.

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