Dr. K.Veeramani, President – Dravidar Kazhagam addresses

The Rationalists’ Forum, a functional wing of Periyar Movement organised the Art and Cultural Festival at Chennai – Villivakkam on 9th June 2013, commemorating the 123rd Birth Anniversary of revolutionary poet Bharatidasan.

Periyar Movement has been celebrating the birth anniversary of the Poet  for many years. But a turning point was witnessed. In earlier 1990s, in order to erase the art and cultural identities of the Tamils, the Pontiff of Kanchi Mutt in Tamil Nadu organised Hindu Art and Cultural Festival at Chennai. To expose the hidden agenda of the Hindu Art Festival, and to arouse the Tamil population beyond organisational identities in a constructive way, Dr.K.Veeramani, President- Dravidar Kazhagam appealed for the Celebration of the Art and Cultural Festival of the Tamils.

From the next year onwards the Pontiff converted the nomenclature of his festival as Indian Art and Cultural Festival. When the motive behind such celebration  was not positive but discriminatory, the Pontiff could not sustain the celebration during the subsequent years. But Periyar Movement has been celebrating every year the birth anniversary of the Poet Bharatidasan as  Art and Cultural Festival of the Tamils regularly. The festival is signified  by the way it is being conducted with the participation of  the Tamils as families in a massive way.

33rd anniversary of  Art and Cultural festival was organised by the Chennai – North Unit of the Rationalists’ Forum.

Competitive Events for Women and Children

Winners of competitions are felicitated

The festival proceedings were commenced by V.Anburaj, General Secretary, Dravidar Kazhagam in the afternoon by 3 o’clock by conducting  an objective test on ‘Periyar : A Thousand Questions – Answers’ in which many house wives participated enthusiastically with due preparation. Simultaneously Elocution Competition on the topics: rationalism, social justice, eradication of superstitions, Periyar E.V.Ramasamy, Arignar Anna, Poet Bharatidasan,  Tamil Eelam militant Dhileepan was held.

Sparkling buds at platform speech

Besides, Drawing, Thirukkural recitation, Singing competitions were also conducted wherein many school going children of varied age groups participated.  Manamigu. A.Arulmozhi, Secretary , Cultural Wing – Dravidar Kazhagam concluded the competition pronouncing to the children on the practical tips  which might be of use to speak effectively at public platforms.

Innovative Paper Toy Dancing

After the conclusion of the competitions,  an art show, ‘Innovative Paper Toy Dancing’ was staged by the art expert Kalai Araperavai M.Kalaivanan. The show infused the rationalistic ideals in the minds of children and youngsters and it enthused all sections of the audience.

Seminar and Felicitation

Next, started, the proceedings of seminar and felicitation. Dr.K.Veeramani, President, Dravidar Kazhagam participated in the festival as the Chief Person. While inaugurating the festival, V.Kumaresan, General Secretary – The Rationalists’ Forum appealed for the translation of the Tamil Poems of Poet Bharatidasan in different languages , which advocated eradication of superstitions and emphasised self respect. G.Olivannan, Vice President narrated with emotional involvement, the relevance and suitability of the Bharatidasan’s poems to the different stages in the life cycle  of humans. Poet Kali.Poonkundran, Vice President, DK recalled the close association of the Poet Bharatidasan with Periyar in disseminating the rationalist ideals.


Honouring with Periyar Award

It is customary to honour people in public life  with Periyar Award at the Festival every year. In the current year, three prominent persons signified with their self respect living , rationalist ideals  and contribution to public good were honoured. Manamigu. A.Thanikachalam, G.Thangamani and Comedy Cine Artist ‘ Vairam’ Chelladurai were honoured with Periyar Award by Dr.K.Veeramani.

In the valediction address, Dr.K.Veeramani spoke elaborately on the poetic fervour and the rationalistic flavour in the poems of Poet Bharatidasan. Even though he recited poems in Tamil language, the ideals advocated in it are  relevant  for the widespread advancement of humanity. In that way, revolutionary poet Bharatidasan’s outlook was far wide  about mankind exceeding the territorial frontiers.

 At the end, the successful persons in the  Periyar objective test and other competitions were felicitated. All the participants were distributed with certificates, gifts by Dr.K.Veeramani. The festival was concluded with joint dinning.

Manamigu. R.Tamil Selvan, President, G.Gopal, Secretary. P.Ramu, Treasurer of the Rationalists’ Forum – Chennai (North) meticulously organised the festival. Manamigu. Prince Ennares Periyar, Secretary, State Students’ Wing , Dravidar Kazhagam compered the festival proceedings in interesting manner. The success of the festival became evident with enormous participation of women and children.  

Compiled : nietzsche

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