2015-05-24 / By Dr Cyriac Maprayil

The Indomitable and charismatic Jayalalitha

Jayalalitha,the much-loved former star of the South Indian Cinematic Screen, is one of the longest serving Chief Ministers of India .

It is no secret that our people in the north dominate politics at the expense of those in the south for a variety of reasons which we shall not go into .Jayalalitha is a Liberal Tamil Nationalist who opposes separatism and has nailed her might to a United India.However, she insists both in the interests of a United India and Tamil Nadu that the discrimination of her People by the so called Norh be addressed urgently and with fairness. Failure to do this ,she has warned ,will encourage the forces of separatism.

Tamil Nadu is a well-run state and an economic Power House. It is envied and admired for its educational ,professional and scientific achievements.In Tamil Nadu it is said people are not interested in your bank balance but in your cultural and educational intelligence.Under Lal Bahadur Shastri ,the Government of India tried to impose Hindi on the Tamils.The so called Southerners ,violently rebelled, There were bloody riots throughout the south particularly in Tamil Nadu.President Radhakrishnan, then President of India who spoke Tamil upbraided Shatri for his chauvinism.He apparently told the diminutive but ascetic Prime Minister : Do not be petty ,if the Tamils do not want Hindi ,respect their wishes and we will have peace .

One does not know Narendra Modis approach to this question but he is not the sort of man to disrespect the Tamil desire to embrace Tamil and English as their official languages.Jayalalitha is firmly behind the movement to protect Tamil,one of the worlds oldest literary and spoken languages. She applies the same logic to the languages of the Andhras(?),Karnataka,,Kerala and other threatened languages of southern India..Jayalalitha is not simply a Tamil Nationalist ,she is a powerful supporter of the way of life of the entire South--she remains a formidable opponent of separatism but also the chauvinism and bigotry of the so called North Indian mindset .

(Dr.Cyriac Maprayil is the Executive Director of the V.K.Krishna Menon Institute and Vice chairman of the India League,London.He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and an expert on South Asian Affairs)

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