Barely two days after Tamil film music director Yuvan Shankar Raja, son of legendary musician Ilayaraja, sported a T-shirt with the wordings, “I am a Tamil pesum Indian’ (I am a Tamil speaking Hindi) with actor Shirish Saravanan, whose T-shirt read, “Hindi theiryadhu poda) (Don’t know Hindi, Go), the garment has gone viral in Tamil Nadu.
The political statement on T-shirts follows alleged attempts to impose Hindi in the state and the unsavoury incident at the Chennai airport where DMK MP Kanimozhi was allegedly asked if she was an Indian for not speaking Hindi.
In fact, Kanimozhi posed for a group photograph with youngsters wearing the T-shirt with the wordings and tweeted, “A spark is enough to ignite a sentiment. When we printed Tshirts, in the era of blatant Hindi imposition, we didn’t know that the youngsters would respond passionately like our forefathers in fighting discriminatory practices. Thank you.”
BJP spokesperson Narayanan said this was not the right way to make a statement. Instead, he said, people should wear T-shirts with wordings urging outsiders to come and learn Tamil.
Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Higher Education Minister K P Anabalagan wrote to Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal disagreeing with the three-language formula as proposed in the National Education Policy. He wrote: “The State of Tamil Nadu has always followed two-language policy, which has been a success. The State Government of Tamil Nadu has already taken a decision to continue with the two-language policy in the future also.”