The Dravidian Movement

When the Dravidian movement was conceived, was it ever intended that the whole of South India would come under its ambit? Did anyone take any ideological or political steps towards that goal?

18 thoughts on “The Dravidian Movement

  1. I plan to do this. Also, to secularise the Khalistani movement and extend it to Greater Punjab – Pakistani Punjab, Indian Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, and Western UP. Also Gujewland, which we don’t really want, but we will need a coastline.

  2. Yes, one of their demands was a separate ‘Dravida Nadu’. They even distributed maps of this nation — which included present day Kerala, Tamil Nady, Southern Karnataka, Andhra, Rayalaseema. Telangana and Northern Karnataka were not part of this nation — I think. Though, I could be wrong.

    Chairman Mao is to blame for it not becoming a reality.

  3. Been a reader here for a while, and since I know some stuff related to this, thought I should write in.

    Yes, the creation of a Dravida Nadu was demanded by Periyar and the Dravidar Kazhagam (the predecessor party to the DMK, the AIADMK and the ilk). Dunno about Telengana, but Northern Karnataka was definitely not part of the proposed nation – the state was to be comprised of all the territories forming part of the former Madras Presidency – and Northern Karnataka (Belgaum, etc.) were part of the Bombay Presidency at the time. Discussions over the whole idea ranged for a couple of decades with the idea being at its peak in the early-to-mid 1940s – including Periyar’s discussions with Jinnah where they both agreed to support each other’s demands for separate soverign states during Partition. The whole idea began to fade out post independence and more or less died out when the states got reorganised on linguistic lines – though I think the DMK kept up the demand until the mid-1960s or so. One additional point – the demand was not for a sovereign state based on the territories of the former Madras Presidency – it was for a sovereign state based on the majority presence of ‘Dravidians’; this was more to do with the anti-Brahmin movement of the DK than to do with North Indians v/s South Indians or the creation of sovereign states on linguistic lines.

  4. Gaurav is right. It was more of an anti-Brahmin movement than an anti-north Indian movement though both ideas were important.

    I don’t think the Dravida movement had the Tamil Eelam in its sight for the short term though I have seen maps on the Internet including north and northeast Sri Lanka and parts of Malaysia. Some people dream too much.

  5. HiAgain,

    A Tamil nation that extends not just to Northern Sri Lanka, but even to Malaysia and Maldives is what will be rightful, just and befitting. The Chola Empire will be reinstated and you will watch with awe when the Jihadists use Tirukkural for their war cry.

  6. While I don’t “entirely” get the context of this post, it is very entertaining.
    In fact, for the first time, the comments are more entertaining than the actual post…!

  7. Yes, the intent of Periyar was for all peoples who spoke Dravidian langauges to unite under a common banner and establish a commonwealth ( sort of like European Union but a “Dravidian Union” if that makes sense ). Of course, there wasn’t much support for the idea in general. BTW, it would be a big mistake to think that the Dravidian movement is a “Tamil” movement – yes, it grew amongst Tamil-speaking people but its leaders were mostly non-Tamil. In fact, Periyar himself was a Telugu Naicker. Amongst the three founders of the Justice party ( the precursor to the Dravida Kazhagam ), only one was a Tamil ( the other two = one Malayalee + one Telugu ). Overall, the idea did not take hold in non-Tamil speaking areas due to the lack of anti-brahmin movements in these societies. Even in TN, the Dravidian movement really resulted in consolidation of the middle castes ( BC and OBC ) rather than any great political change.

  8. @Gaurav : There is nothing “mad” about the Dravidian movement. It was a natural response to the extreme casteism and chauvinism of Brahmins and the faux “Aryan” complex of North India. The Dravidian movement also accomplished a lot by way of social reform, emancipation of women, federalism etc. Why don’t you try to make an intellectual argument by supporting your statements with facts or are you just another Internet gasbag?

  9. Hi, I saw this article when i am trying to check about the Dravidian forums. I am not sure why the movement has died down, but it still have great relevance in today’s life. The approach of northern indians towards people in southern part of india is really bad. The division is still there; as the northy population spread across to southern parts, we are getting discriminated in our home states too! Most painful fact is that they don’t even consider our feeling when they mimic about our language and our culture. I suppose these kind of provoking attitude is main cause of regional issues that is happening in Maharashtra. I wish we have some kind of forum to express our disagreement over the discrimination. Cheers

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