After taking over bigger pan-India, pan-Tamil points comparable to State rights, Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi seems to be pivoting in direction of points surrounding its major assist base — Adi Dravidars and Paraiyars — in politics and different spheres in Tamil Nadu.
The thought was put ahead at a latest webinar on Rettaimalai Srinivasan, performed by the occasion and presided over by its chief Thol. Thirumavalavan. The occasion’s common secretary and Villupuram MP D. Ravikumar was a part of the webinar.
Increasing on the precept, in an interview with The Hindu, Mr. Ravikumar demanded that round 60 castes that come below the Scheduled Caste listing in Tamil Nadu (barring the Devendrakula Vellalars and Arundhathiyars) be recognized as ‘Adi Dravidars’.
“In line with the 2011 census, there are 76 castes in SC listing. Out of those, 2 castes don’t have any members; 14 have already separated – 7 establish themselves as ‘Arundhathiyars’ and seven extra are demanding that they be recognised as ‘Devendrakula Vellalars’ and be faraway from the SC listing. Out of those 60 castes, Adi Dravidars and Paraiyars represent round 90 lakh when it comes to inhabitants. If we establish the 60 castes as Adi Dravidars, it should cross 1 crore folks when it comes to inhabitants and they are going to be round 65% of the overall Dalit inhabitants within the State,” he stated.
Mr. Ravikumar stated that the Adi Dravidar (and Paraiyar) neighborhood had been systematically sidelined – in relation to illustration in jobs, training and in addition when it comes to political significance within the State – regardless of being such an enormous inhabitants.
“Regardless of the numbers, we now have by no means been given correct illustration or political significance within the State. Even the Adi Dravidar political icons will not be revered whereas different caste icons are revered. The explanation that is occurring is as a result of this neighborhood doesn’t declare its caste id as a lot because it talks about annihilation of caste,” he stated.
Whereas the VCK had pursued quite a lot of progressive bigger political points, he was requested if the choice to refocus its consideration to the wants of the neighborhood is not going to end in occasion being labelled a ‘scheduled caste’ occasion as soon as once more. “We aren’t claiming the Paraiyar id. Claiming sub-caste id is in opposition to the Ambedkar’s idea of ‘Annihilation of caste’. We’re highlighting this challenge solely within the curiosity of social justice. Normally, solely numerically small communities might be sidelined in electoral politics, which works on the energy of numbers. Regardless of being one of many largest communities in Tamil Nadu, why is there such an enormous neglect?” he requested.
Whereas Mr. Ravikumar acknowledged that Adi Dravidar id and Paraiyar id are sometimes interchangeable in sensible phrases, he reiterated that the VCK isn’t making an attempt a caste-mobilisation. “Adi Dravidar isn’t a caste id however a secular ‘casteless’ id and was put ahead by leaders comparable to Rettaimalai Srinivasan, M.C. Rajah and Ayothee Thass. We’re asking that each one 60 castes to be introduced below ‘Adi Dravidar’ id. Over time, they may inter-marry and sub-caste variations will wither away,” he stated.
On the difficulty of imposing the ‘Adi Dravidar’ id on different communities, Mr. Ravikumar stated, “We can’t power anybody to just accept this id. Let this grow to be a mannequin for eradicating caste variations. If there are neighborhood leaders who don’t wish to be known as ‘Adi Dravidars’, they need to be free to go away.”
Mr. Ravikumar believes that figuring out 60 castes as ‘Adi Dravidars’ will end in elimination of variations between them. “When you take Mukkulathors, all three castes have grow to be one and are known as Thevars. The identical has occurred with Vanniyars. The sub-group political and cultural variations have disappeared over time. The critics usually ask: how can castes be annihilated when Scheduled Castes keep variations inside themselves? There’s logic on this criticism and we now have to begin from right here,” he stated.