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Society & Social Issues > Lifestyle

Kamarajar Jayanthi and International Nadars Day - III

Once the `brahmin question was settled, then naturally came the divisions within the non-brahmin segments.

The `Periyar factor and the post-Independence socio-economic reforms, particularly during the chief ministership of the late K Kamarajar has since ensured the spread of education to all social grades, economic well-being and consequent social awareness among the lower strata of the non- brahmin segments

Later with the influence and charisma of Kamaraj, even his own few left over community stalwarts in South Tamilnadu abandoned Self-Respect Movement's new avatar Dravida Kazhagam & its later offshoots to enmass support to Congress movement in the late stages of freedom struggle and then during Congress Rule in the state.

The evolution of Legendry Mass Leader of Poor:

Kumarasamy Kamarajar was humble and poor in a backward area . He belonged to one of the most depressed castes of Hindu society. His schooling lasted only six years. He was barely fifteen when he heard of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre which was the turning point in his life.

Kamarajar became an able organiser in mobilizing people for public meetings addressed by patriots to take the people from Self Respect aspects to national mainstream. Appreciating his skill, Satyamurthi took him under his fold. In 1931 PCC Congress Conference, Kamaraj influenced to ensure Sathyamurthy became Vice President along with Rajaji as President. In 1936, Sathyamurthy became President and Kamaraj became Secretary for Regional Congress Committee. He worked hard for the cause of the freedom movement, unmindful of his personal comfort or career. He was eighteen when he responded to the call of Gandhiji for non-cooperation with the British. He carried on propaganda in the villages, raised funds for Congress work and took a leading part in organising meetings.

A pre-Independence party like the Congress which had nothing to offer to its cadres except suffering and imprisonment under the British rule, became the home for Kamarajar. In April 1930, Kamarajar joined the Salt Satyagraha Movement at Vedaranyam and he spent most of his youth in jail.

He grew fond of books and through interactions with intellectuals in prison Kamarajar developed his leadership skills that proved a valuable asset to him as an administrator in later years of his life.

Kamarajar was elected President of the Tamilnad Congress Committee in February 1940 after Sathyamurthy advised to accept the Presidentship and even volunteered to do Committee secretary under Kamarajar's Presidentshp. Kamarajar held that post till 1954.

In 1942, Gandhiji started August Revolution or Quit India Movement. There was a great support for the August Revolution struggle at Nadar community strongholds villages such as Thiruchendur, Arumuganeri, Kurumbur, Udangudi and the all the surrounding villages. In the famous Kulasekarapattinam case, where there was an attempt to take away guns from a salt factory, the British officer was killed by the gang that belonged to the locality. Several Nadar community freedom fighters were jailed and tried in court. Two youth Kasirajan and Rajagopalan were sentenced to heaviest punishment against which there was continuous struggle to get them released from imprisonment.

Bsram B

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