14th December 1997 Comrade George Fernandes organized one day International Seminar for Solidarity with Eelam Tamils and only 4 Tamil leaders spoke in that Seminar. Pazha.Nedumaran, K.Veeramani, Ira.Janarthanam, N.Nandhivarman. Comrade Thiagu translated the speeches of other leaders. Pazha.Nedumaran brought out a souvenir of that Seminar BLACKING OUT ONLY MY WRITTEN SPEECH . The contents of that speech later in letter form was sent to all India Political parties and leaders. The letter given in verbatim below written in 2008 is still needs to be pondered and introspected by Indian leaders .We reproduce :

 Every word of this letter springs from my heart. Tamils are emotional but their political responses should be rational. Yes on the question of Tamilnadu raising voice in Indian Parliament or presenting charter of demands for resolving the Tamil Eelam people’s plight, we…

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long march of tamils


[Dravida Pervai happily reproduces the debate that took place in Rajya Sabha in  May 1963. DMK Founder Aringnar Anna ultimately changed the name of Madras State as Tamil Nadu and fulfilled the centuries old desire of the Tamil Nation on his becoming the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu in 1967. In 1963 he spoke in Parliament on the question of renaming Tamil Nadu. You can find out the arguments advanced for and against and also note who opposed the renaming in order to understand the forces that played for and against Tamil nationalism]


Mr. Vice Chairman, I am rarely in full agreement with my friend Mr.Bhupesh Gupta, but today I rise to support him whole-heartedly, fully and sincerely. The only weakness of the Bill is that it is a non-official one. I would have liked an official Bill to be brought forward for this very necessary and very simple thing that would have satisfied millions of Tamilians in Tamil Nadu. Many arguments that were advanced against the Bill brought forward are perhaps more due to the colour of the mover rather than the arguments advanced for its support. One Honorable Member was saying that he was not moving a Bill, which the Madras State has asked him to move. I regret very much that sometimes it becomes necessary to explain some rudimentary principles. The Madras Government will never ask a non-official Bill to be brought forward on its behalf. If the state government wants the Bill to be brought forward, there are the state representatives in this Assembly and they would have brought it forward, and therefore, to say that the Bill cannot be supported just because the Madras Government has not asked Mr.Gupta to bring the Bill shows that their only argument to fight against the Bill is that their party or their State Government has not instructed them to act in this way. I can well understand the political tremor in their hearts, but that is no argument against this Bill. The arguments advanced by the sponsors of the Bill for renaming Madras as Tamil Nadu have not been answered by any one of the speakers who spoke about it.

Sheel Badra Yajee: I have answered it.

Anna: I cannot understand- I very rarely understand- your language and, therefore, I do not know whether there is logic or not but I would say that some of the arguments advanced were not proper. One Honorable Member was saying that there are Telugu knowing people in Tamil Nadu, Malayalam and Kanarese speaking people and, therefore, to name Madras as Tamil Nadu will create a sort of tremor in their hearts. May I inform this House, through you, Sir, that all these arguments were advanced and shattered in my part of the country. All these arguments did not stand the onslaught of reason and logic. For the sake of informing this House I may inform you Sir, that on 24 th February 1961 the Leader of the House in the state assembly stood up to say that he was accepting part of the non official resolution brought forward not by the DMK or any other political party which is considered to be inimical to Congress, but by a PSP [Praja Socialist Party]Member. That PSP member brought forward a non official resolution for renaming Madras as Tamil Nadu and it was discussed many days and finally the then Finance Minister and the Leader of the House Mr.C.Subramaniam, stood up to say that he was accepting a part or the spirit of the resolution and added that thereafter all publications of the Madras government would appear in the name of Tamil Nadu Government. It is in such a way that all publications in Tamil in the Tamil Nadu government are being printed and published. As a matter of fact, after making the historic declaration on the floor of the Madras assembly on 24 th February, the very next day the Finance Minister had to present his budget and in presenting the budget, the opening words of the Finance Minister were: “ In consonance with the declaration made yesterday, I am now presenting to budget for Tamil Nadu.” Therefore all the arguments that Telugu speaking, the Malayalam speaking, and the Kanarese speaking people will be up against this change in name fall to ground because part of this has been accepted by the Government. The part relating to the amendment of Constitution, the word Madras to be deleted and the word Tamil Nadu to be inserted was not accepted.

Therefore, even the Government much less by the Madras Congress leaders cannot accommodate the sentimental arguments advanced. Sir, I am really surprised to see how ill informed my Hon. friends are, those who advanced arguments against the Bill. One Hon. Member stated here that Kollegal is in Tamil Nadu. That Hon. Member unfortunately not present in the House at present. I may tell them and his friends may tell him, that Kollegal today is part of Mysore. It has been taken away from the composite State of Madras and after the formation of linguistic states, has gone to Mysore. If my Hon. friend is so ill informed about Kollegal, I am not surprised at his arguments that nowhere in Tamil literature does the word Tamil Nadu occur. A politician who cannot understand that Kollegal does not form part of Tamil Nadu cannot be expected to be conversant with Tamil literature. For the edification of the House and for his own edification, I will point out the names of certain books wherein the word Tamil Nadu is to be found. These are books written 1800 or 2000 years ago. I am reading the name in Tamil but the Hon. Member who made this allegation is a Tamilian Congressman and he can understand and the Hon. Deputy Minister who will be making the reply. She being also a Tamilian may tell him. The names of Paripaadal, Pathitrupathu and more popular names of Silapathigaram and Manimegalai. These are all Tamil classics written more than 1000 years ago and in Paripaadal it is stated “ Thandamizh veli Thamizh Naatu agamellam” which means Tamil Nadu that is surrounded by sweet Tamil on all three sides. In Pathitrupathu, a classic written about 1800 years it is stated “ Imizh kadal veli Thamizhagam” meaning Tamil Nadu which has got sea as boundary. In Silapathigaram it is stated “ Then Thamizh nannadu” meaning good Tamil Nadu and in Manimegalai it is stated“Sambutheevinul Tamizhaga marungil “ Tamil Nadu which is called Sambutheevu. If my Hon. Members would like to have more popular illustrations I would like to refer them to the poems of Poet Kamban and Sekkilar both of whom have definitely used the word Tamil Nadu. It was only afterwards that there were three kingdoms, the Cheranadu, The Cholanadu and the Pandyanadu. Tamil Nadu is to be found in the classics of Tamil. It is not that there is poverty of ideas in the classics. It only shows that my Hon. friend does not spend much thought or time over the Tamil classics. I may point out for the edification of this House that when the Congress government in Tamil Nadu purchased the Jaipur Palace at Ooty known as Aranmore Palace they immediately renamed the Palace as Thamizhagam. I am pointing this out to say that the Congress there is trying to assuage our feelings, is trying to carry Tamil Nadu people along with them by saying they have renamed the Aranmore Palace as Thamizhagam, that they are publishing all the Tamil manifestos as Tamil Nadu Government publications, that only for international correspondence they want the name “Madras”. They are not prepared to amend the Constitution. If the arguments advanced by some of the Tamil Nadu Congress people were to be read by the Chief Minister of Madras, he would turn around and say “ You too Brutus”. All the arguments advanced for not renaming it falls flat on the ground because even the Congress Government there does not approve of these arguments.

Another particular issue was raised here that the Bill is being brought forward only as a publicity stunt of the Communist party. Why don’t we appreciate the Communist Party for its sense of political expediency? Are not all political parties interested in getting political publicity? Is publicity a heinous crime? Why do you publish reports and books on Five-year plans? Is that not publicity done at public cost? Yet you accuse other political parties saying that this is publicity. But let me tell this House through you, that even though you defeat the Bill, he has gained that publicity. You are not going to rob him anymore of that publicity. When he comes to Tamil Nadu he can conveniently face Tamilians and say, “ I pleaded for you but it is the ruling party that let you down.” Therefore you have unawares walked into Mr.Gupta’s snare. I would have appreciated if the ruling party had approached Mr.Bhupesh Gupta and stated, “ Do not bring in this non-official Bill, we ourselves are interested in it, we will bring it forward.”

Then Mr.Santhanam pointed out that we have an uphill task in retaining Madras, we had to fight with so many people and we retained Madras. I can claim some amount of credit in that fight and when I was in the thick of that fight, I did not find Mr.Santhanam by my side.

Akbar Ali Khan: At the cost of Andhra

Anna: With the consent of the Andhras, I can say that. That is because the present government there is providing even today, in the border areas, measures for safeguarding Telugu culture and for imparting Telugu language. Therefore though Madras has been taken by Tamilians, we have no enmity with the Andhras. But my friend Santhanam was saying that it was such an uphill task, retaining Madras that we would like to keep Madras. This is not a question of keeping Madras or giving it up. This is the question of keeping Madras in Tamilnadu and renaming the state as Tamil Nadu. Madras, after all is the capital city of Tamil Nadu, as Ahamadabad happens to be the capital city of Gujarat, as Chandigrah happens to be the capital city of Punjab. If this logic of naming the state after the name of capital city is to be followed, Kerala should be renamed Trivandrum, Andhra is to renamed Hyderabad, Punjab is to be renamed Chandigarh and Gujarat to be renamed Ahamadabad.

Bhubesh Gupta: And Bengal should be renamed Calcutta.

Anna: My government, my Congress government in Madras is interested in bilingualism. That is because its head Government is interested to have two names for everything, India that is Bharat, Jana gana mana and Vandhe Madaram. They always want to keep two blocks. Take something from here, take something from there. So the Madras government is having Tamil Nadu for the consumption of Tamilians and Madras for all India consumption. It is a very awkward word “ duplicity”. And that is why my friend Mr.Bhupesh Gupta was saying that some of the congress people talk in one way there and talk in another way here. No Congress can face a Tamilian audience and say that the name Madras should be retained. I challenge it.

T.S.Pattabhiraman {Madras}: We have faced it during the agitation of Tamil arasu Kazhagam and my friend knows it. What he is saying is complete travesty of facts.

Anna: I know how Pattabhiraman faces agitation. I wont say it. Let us not face each other as Congress and DMK. Let us face the Tamilian public on this single sanctified issue of renaming the state and if you carry along with you 51 percent of the people I am prepared to bow my head before you. This is not a party issue at all. The renaming of Madras as Tamil Nadu has been accepted by the Communist Party, by the DMK, by the PSP and you will be surprised, by the Madras branch of Swatantra Party too. Therefore all parties are one in this issue of renaming Madras as Tamil Nadu.

T.S.Pattabhiraman: None of them put it in their election manifesto.

Anna: I would present a copy of the DMK election manifesto to him tomorrow. I am sure Pattabhiraman knows Tamil. This issue has been an issue for more than 10 to 15 years. He was saying that only Tamil Arasu Kazhagam was fighting for it. It is true partially because it was only the Tamil arasu Kazhagam that started an agitation for it, but all other political parties were immensely intimately interested in this issue. They have printed it in their manifestos, in their political speeches and no District Conference of DMK took place without passing this resolution of renaming Madras as Tamil Nadu. Therefore it is not simply on the spur of the moment that I am pleading for it. My sorrow is that my friend Mr.Bhupesh Gupta had stolen the thunder from me by sponsoring this Bill. But for that, I would like to present before this House that this has been an issue all along in Tamil Nadu. And they have not answered Mr.Bhupesh Gupta; What do you loose by renaming Madras as Tamil Nadu? Nobody has answered that.

N.M.Lingam [Madras] Anyway what do you gain by renaming it as Tamil Nadu?

Anna: What do I gain? What have you gained by renaming Parliament as Lok Sabha? What have you gained by renaming Council of States as Rajya Sabha? What have you gained by renaming President as Rastrapathi? Therefore I say what do you loose? This is important because if you were to loose something precious, we would not press for it. If you do not loose something fundamental, we will press for it. The other point was raised, what do you gain? We gain satisfaction sentimentally; we gain satisfaction that an ancient name is inculcated in the hearts of millions and scores of millions of people. Is that not enough compensation for the small trouble of changing the name? Therefore all the arguments that have been advanced have been shattered.

They have advanced an apologetic argument saying that if the State government had come forward with this, we would have accepted this. And they are perfectly aware of the composition of the State legislature where the Congress party is in a majority. Would you ask the Congress member in Madras State legislature to vote for such a bill if it were to come there, without party whip? No

T.S.Pattabhiraman: Your party members could have brought forward a resolution in the House and changed the name. Why have you not done it for past seven or eight years?

Anna: I am coming to that. When we present such a bill to the Madras legislature, they say that if you want to rename, an amendment to the constitution is necessary and an amendment of the Constitution is possible only when you go to Parliament.

T.S.Pattabhiraman: I am saying a resolution, not a Bill. A resolution can be made.

Anna: I may say for the information of the Hon. Member that we pressed this point during the discussion on the non-official Bill of PSP. In fact we even staged a walk out. The DMK and Communist party joined together in the walk out. That is our numerical position there. When the non-official resolution was discussed in the Madras assembly we pressed for the constitutional amendment and the only explanation offered to us was that it was only possible at the level of Parliament. And when we come to Parliament we are asked to go back to the state legislature. We are asked to go to Parliament because you are entrenched in both places not because your logic is sound but simply because you are entrenched in both places.

G.Rajagopalan [Madras] We are entrenched because the people vote for us. It has been discussed even during elections. There had been fasts by certain members and one person even lost his life after fasting. Even after that we won elections. That shows the people still want as it is- not for the satisfaction of some politicians who want a slogan.

Anna: Madam Deputy Chairman, I am very glad that the discussion is becoming very interesting. But I may say for the information of the House that DMK has nothing to do with fasting. The fasting was undertaken by a non-party man, in fact a relative of the Chief minister of Madras Mr.Sankaralinga [Nadar}. And to say that in spite of fasting you have not changed shows how human you are. Therefore the question was discussed there. We were asked to go to Parliament. When we come to Parliament we are again sent back to legislature. In both places the answer is as my Hon. friend had stated, “ The people had voted for us”. Well that is a fact, a tragic fact, and a black fact that ought to be seen.

G.Rajagopalan: In spite of you tragedy is still there

T.S.Pattabhiraman: He says tragedy will be permanent. The tragedy of Congress getting a majority at every election will be a permanent feature and we are prepared to accommodate you.

Anna: Madam Deputy Chairman my friend was saying that this tragedy is going to be permanent. Woe to the country and to the people. That is all what I can say. But I would like to press this point that a Constitution amendment can be thought of and made only through Parliament. That is why we have approached The Parliament. If any amendment is brought forward on this or any suggestion is given that it should be circulated to gather public opinion, we take up that challenge. I do not ask you to take this as an election issue. Do not be afraid of that.


We are not making it an election issue. This is an issue to be taken to the people for getting their consent or otherwise. That is not going to affect your offices. Nobody thinks about that. You may remain there. This is not a question of analysis of our different parties. This is a question wherein a particular issue has to be referred to the public. Are you prepared for that? That is what we ask. You are not prepared for that and that is why I say

N.M.Anwar [Madras] Madam on a point of information I have got the highest respect and regard for my good friend Mr.annadurai. But will he kindly explain what there is in retaining the name Madras that has got such worldwide publicity? How is he going to meet that point of view? Where is the difficulty in retaining this worldwide name of Madras?


Anna: The only point in answer to the Hon. member Mr.anwar is this. What we gain is our sentimental satisfaction and status of our ancient land. If in Madras we change the name of China Bazaar into Nethaji Subhas Chandra Road nothing is changed in the street but something is changed in our thinking, in our soul, in our fibre. That is why we are pressing for it. not because we think that keeping Madras will be wrong.

N.M.Anwar: My question is not that. We agree that there is something good in calling it Tamil Nadu. But what is your allergy to Madras, which has got a worldwide publicity.

Anna: My allergy is if Madras is used as name of the state, you confuse the capital with the state. Madras is the name of the capital city. Tamil Nadu is the name that ought to be given to the state. There ought to be a distinction between the name of the state and its capital, and therefore, I whole-heartedly support the Bill brought forward and I would commend it to the House.


ImageGotabaya the prime suspect in Matale mass killings now begins his evidence killing operations –Orders destruction of police records

 (Lanka-e-News -08.April.2013, 11.55PM) The present Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapakse the prime suspect in the Matale mass genocide , had ordered today that all police registers and records which are older than 5 years at the police stations in the Central province including Matale be destroyed. Lanka e news reported yesterday that he had also instructed the IGP that all reports linked to the court action regarding the Matale mass graves be forwarded to him.

The objective in all these measures taken is to completely wipe out every information that links him to the mass murder though the orders are absolutely and brazenly unlawful. According to the police dept. rules and the supreme court (SC) new law reports these actions are totally illegal. Based on police department regulations , the records which are older than 5 years in connection with day to day information , crime information , traffic offences , civil cases and other information books can only be destroyed if court proceedings is not going to take place . Besides , they can only be destroyed in front of the relevant SSP .during his half yearly inspection.

In any case , if information has to be secured from these books or records or registers subsequently regarding crimes or against an officer, those records cannot be destroyed under any circumstances , and no police officer has the power to destroy. This is clearly stipulated in the police regulations. In the NLR reports it is mentioned that the SC had given verdicts many times to that effect.

Accordingly , while there is a case already in the courts regarding the Matale mass graves murders , and Gotabaya has been incriminated as being involved in the murders when he was Colonel Gotabaya at that time and the commanding officer in Matale ,and when these criminal details against him have come to light , destroying the records books and registers is absolutely illegal.

Based on reports reaching Lanka e news , the police registers / records regarding the murders and missing persons in the period 1988 -89 , and the police books are still intact , because a commission was appointed previously to investigate them , and a large number of witnesses gave evidence. Some of them even filed cases in the SC. As a result those police books / registers are still intact .

Gotabaya Rajapakse is already tainted with war crime charges and has therefore become notorious even internationally as a ruthless criminal. Hence, if the records and registers linked to his latest crime exposure – Matale mass murder are destroyed adhering to Gotabaya’s order today , it will be the Matale SSP R D S Medawatte and Central province Senior DIG M R B Ambanwala, will have to fully answer for those illegal activities later .

The discovery of the skeletons of 154 dead persons does not relate to a simple crime by any stretch of imagination.. It must be noted that the whole world is watching this investigation not only for its hugeness in number but also for the brutality and callousness of the perpetrators.

May it be warned that if any officer commits any wrongful or unlawful acts on Gota’s orders or of his own accord during the investigations, some day he would have to face the punishment via courts Locally or internationally.




 Former Chief Election Commissioner of India, who started his career as Delhi Metropolitan Council official had served in Pondicherry as Secretary of Culture and Ports, and also had been Secretary in of Town and Country Planning. After climbing to reach great heights to become Chief Election Commissioner of this great democracy, suddenly his views appeared in The Hindu dated 16th August of 2012 Open-Editorial page while we thought he has forgotten Pondicherry in his retirement.

A heritage, all at Sea is his article. Let me remind him of our heritage. I wrote in New Indian Express on June 4th of 2005 under the title Saving the Coast, hence I was happy about Navin Chawla’s concern for the Pondicherry Coast. “As per the study by the School of Earth Sciences of Bharathidasan University before 1.5 million years ago sea extended up to Madurai. Around 90,000 years ago Chennai, Pondicherry and Vedaranyam were encircled by seas. Since sea level subsided 65,000 years ago India and Ceylon got connected. When sea level rose by 27,000 years ago both parted and when sea level fell by 17,000 years ago joined again to part again”. I have quoted from the report in my article. So we are thinking of our heritage not limiting our vision to the colonial period but to those past which is emerging from darkness.

Over 2 lakh years old fossilized skull found

PTI Mar 31, 2003, 12.29am IST

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A well-fossilized human skull, dating back to over two lakh years, has been found from within ferricrete at a site near Villupuram district of Tamil Nadu, in a geo-archaeological exploration conducted at the site.

Besides being one of the oldest hominid fossils to be found in India, the study of the find could challenge the widely held theory that a fossil would not remain intact for long in ferricrete without sediment intrusion, Dr P Rajendran, UGC professor-scientist and archaeologist at the Department of History, Kerala University, who conducted the exploration said.

It is known fact the human race emanated from East Africa 1.60 million years ago, and if so when there is a discovery of a fossilized baby dating back to almost same age, is it not our heritage, and should we Pondicherrians not proclaim that ancient homo-sapiens had their home in our soil.

In and around Pondicherry 535 stone inscriptions have been found, out of which 4 are in Sanskrit, 2 in Kannada, 1 in Latin ,2 in French and 1 in Armenian. Should we not preserve these heritages and should we only preserve few colonial style buildings.

The rest in 535 stone inscriptions 16 Chola Emperors, 8 Pandyan Emperors, 2 Later Pallava Emperors, and 13 Vijayanagara Emperors have inscribed their legacy in Tamil. Is it wrong to call these history as our past, and should we only think of 1800 colonial style houses declared by Indian National Trust for Arts and Heritage Pondicherry chapter in 1995 as our heritage relics. Navin Chawla laments that half of these houses have undergone changes invoking the fundamental right of the legally rightful owners of these houses to construct or alter or re-construct their houses or dwellings in whichever architectural style of their choice. Nowadays with increasing thefts, burglary, house breaking and anti-socials on the prowl, is it prudent to keep houses with thinnai , and without compound or fencing inviting anyone to sleep in the frontal areas of these houses with French architectural style.

We are not having pyramids in Pondicherry that calls for preservation. We have not built Kallanai dam like Karikal Cholan or Tanjavor Temple like Raja Raja Cholan. Nor is it that we have unearthed within the four boulevards, a site like in Indus Valley, hence to call the area within four boulevards of Pondicherry as if it is Jerusalem is not logical that needs preservation. The book written by Jean Deloche titled Origins of Urban Development of Pondicherry according to 17 th Century Dutch plans about which I wrote in New Indian Express on 13 th November 2004, reveals that “the Dutch plans of Pondicherry preserved at the National Archives in the Hague show that the orthogonal street pattern of the town is a creation of the Dutch. The plans of 1693 show that in Francoise Martin’s times the streets or lanes followed an irregular pattern without any shape or symmetry whereas the plans drafted in 1694  during the Dutch occupation one finds the design of a large new town with a regular geometric lay out rectangular blocks of houses separated by straight streets, intersecting at right angles.”

My humble query is should not the Dutch legacy be hailed, and why Town and Country Planning Department of Pondicherry over which Navin Chawla’s rule too existed for some years, failed to follow the Dutch design when the sub urban areas beyond 4 boulevards of Pondicherry developed rapidly, and with real estate boom everywhere in agricultural lands lay outs propped up and concrete jungles mushroomed, and are we to demolish those townships to bring back the symmetrical pattern of the areas within four boulevard to cover entire town that has grown beyond control and without foresight Town and Country Planning of Pondicherry went into slumber for decades, almost half a century.

Multi storey buildings and flat system were absent in French rule. But when Pondicherry integrated with Indian Union, the architectural style of rest of India made its head way here, and with increase in population even within the so called white town, where in 1995 INTACH identified 300 buildings as heritage buildings, multi storey flats have come up. Our women used to wear saree and blouses, now chudidars and pyjamas have caught up and even jeans t-shirts have replaced pavadai and thavani ? Are we going to say to preserve our heritage our girls and women should wear only those old fashioned dresses and not wear modern dress? A Temple or a Fort or a Pyramid or An Archeologically declared site like Arikamedu can be rightfully called our heritage. Colonial architecture which is out of fashion in modern India looses its relevance. We are part of India and are bound to be influenced by construction designs that prevail in rest of India.

 In the first scientific excavations conducted in 1945 and published in the book Rome beyond the Imperial Frontiers [1954] Mortimer Wheeler left “ an impression of a sleepy village suddenly awakened by enterprising Romans who built stone buildings and a Port, then fell back to sleep when Roman’s left” opines Francis Peter Junior.

From the arretine pottery table wares used by the Romans found there Mortimer Wheeler came to the conclusion that Roman trade flourished between 14 th B.C to 25 B.C. Jean Mari Casal conducted his excavations between 1947 and 1950 opined that much before Romans advent Arikamedu was a prosperous Port dating back to 250 B.C. People of that place were civilized from Iron Age claims Jean Mari Casal who found gold jewels in the burial sites of Suthukeni and was stunned by the prosperity of the people. Whatever may be the dating, the Port of Arikamedu is centuries ahead of colonial entry into Pondicherry soil. Are we to uphold our Indian legacy and heritage or are we going to attach importance to preserve an old prison building in main market area of Nehru Street, instead of allowing its demolition to build a parking area for the crowded market zone?

The proposed plans of how beach road would look like after INTACH mooted modifications are carried out as shown in the website of Pondicherry chapter of INTACH shows the Mahatma Gandhi statue missing? Are these men inside an Indian National Trust contemplating to throw Mahatma Gandhi into Bay of Bengal to reclaim the beach in their way of colonial legacy preservation? May be even Jawaharlal Nehru statue installed on the pedestal of Dupleix statue would be an eyesore to these saviors of colonial heritage. They may even bring down Jawaharlal Nehru statue and install Dupleix once again in his original place occupied during colonial era.

You would have seen protests in Indian cities, which is an every day affair. Have you heard that the weavers of London protested in the streets of London in 1700 demanding ban on import of Indian textiles. Indian textiles were far superior to British products and weavers of British Isles forced their government to ban Indian textiles. The excavations in Red Sea ports and Dutch maritime records reveal that once upon a time India was the couturier of the world. Ms.Rosemary Crill of the V& A Museum of London along with co-authors Ruth Barnes and Steven Cohen published a book Trade, Temple and Court Indian Textiles from Tapi Collections, wherein she states “The East India Company was founded in 1600 to sell British woolen cloth to India, their ships arrived in India in Surat [of Gujarat] in 1608 with vast quantities of broadcloth but the trade soon faltered and died out. What changed their fortune was the discovery of cotton, which was completely unknown in Europe.” Till 18th century from 10 th century, Indian weavers were unbeatable in world markets. In fact most of them were Tamil weavers.

 Recently speaking at the Historical Society of Puducherry, Professor Orse M.Gobalakichenane who published the Veera Naicker’s diary 1778-1792 admitted that even in France, French weavers protested against import of textiles from French India namely Puducherry, Karaikal, Mahe, Yenam and Chandranagore. Quoting Veera Naicker’s diary Professor Orse.M.Gobalakichenane narrated on how the kaikolars, the Tamil community of weavers were taken on three year contract to French colonies to teach local weavers, weaving techniques. I intervened and asked, why France took weavers from Puducherry, whereas they could have brought from their France. Economics apart, it became evident by the Professor’s reply that French weavers protested Puducherry textiles leading to the logical conclusion that our weavers were far superior in their skills which made them wanted species every where.

Is it not the duty of Indian National Trust for Heritage to preserve this heritage by reviving the weaving techniques that were the envy of even western countries.

Pondicherry is an intermediary port, and when Thiru. P. Shanmugam was Chief Minister; I suggested that this Port be handed over to Singapore Government owned Singapore Port Trust so that it can be used as transshipment harbor. Since there is nothing much to export from or import to industries around Pondicherry, if this had been made a transshipment harbor it would have eased congestion in Singapore Port and brought revenue to Puducherry Government. Unfortunately my plea went unheeded. Successive Chief Ministers developed it as fishing harbor.  If it should be fishing harbor, fish cold storage facilities should exist there. Fish or prawn packing preserving and export processing industry must have been set up within the harbor. Nothing happened. The rulers forgot that during French regime had built a tunnel beneath the backwaters 100 meters away from coast near Port’s mouth which starts from Vambakeerapalayam and reaches Veerampattinam. This underwater tunnel was used by fishermen in that colonial era. This tunnel, a heritage tunnel obstructs flow of water from sea or sand from river into the seas. There is a dredger, often given on contracts to powerful media or politicians and never to Dredging Corporation of India, a Government of India enterprise.

So vessels entering harbor is next to impossible dream. Fishing vessels get struck as dredging is not done by professionals and adding to the complexity of the problem is the hidden under water tunnel, which Government is neither ready to break nor ready to study on how to keep the mouth of the river hindrance free for shipping boats to reach the fishing harbor.

So Navin Chawla’s single point agenda in supporting INTACH, Pondicherry chapter which wants to get rid off the Gandhiji’s statue in Beach, as pictures by their proposed modernization of beach picture shown in their website has no justification even in the name of upholding colonial legacy, when many buildings which are newly built or remodeled within white town or even in Beach does not resemble the buildings that existed in French India. The proposed picture of Nehru Street, the main market area of Pondicherry, which perhaps INTACH wants to rename as Dupliex Street, shows trees in the pavements and street appears to be converted into a park. Are our business people aware of the INTACH plan to make Nehru Street only usable by pedestrians and cars and two-wheelers to be barred from entering?

Indians won freedom from colonialism but some vested interests are for clinging to colonial past, and that too in architecture only. Let Navin Chawla get rid of his selective amnesia.

One such colonial building Post Office of Pondicherry, faced roof collapse creating fears in the minds of post men who agitated for rebuilding the Post office as suggested by PWD than window dressing by INTACH. Similar fate awaits and let buildings fall and kill people but we who allowed rebuilding of Ariankuppam bridge of colonial legacy wont allow buildings in white town, INTACH may proclaim . Long live sadists of INTACH.