Is the government of Tamil Nadu considering changing the Tamil New Year’s Day to January 14 from April 14?
“Happy Pongal and Tamil New Year everyone.” This sentence on cloth bags containing 20 groceries to be distributed to more than 2 million ration card holders in Pongal State sparked frenzied speculation on the subject.
Tamil New Year’s Day is usually celebrated on April 14 at the start of the Tamil month Chithirai, but the then DMK government under M Karunanidhi had changed it in 2008 to January 14 to coincide with the start of the Tamil month of Thai , celebrated as the harvest. party or Pongal.
Although Karunanidhi said he was only responding to scholars’ demands that the Tamil New Year should be celebrated on the first day of Thai, his arch-rival J Jayalalithaa, who took power in 2011, repealed the passed law. by the previous DMK government and returned to the New Year’s Day observance on 14 April.
Since the DMK came to power in May this year, there has been intense speculation that the Tamil New Year’s Day will change. But things seem to have settled down when the list of public holidays released by the state government mentioned April 14 as Tamil New Year’s Day.
However, the sentence printed on the cloth bags with the name of Chief Minister MK Stalin renewed the debate. Officials have been tight-lipped on the matter and declined to speak when asked for comment.
Even though the issue is unclear, Paatali Makkal Katchi (PMK) on Wednesday called on the DMK waiver to pass a law ensuring that the Tamil New Year is celebrated on January 14 instead of April 14.
“PMK firmly believes that the first day of Thai is the start of the Tamil New Year. There is ample evidence to establish the fact that Thai is the first month of the Tamil calendar, including in the centuries-old Sangam literature,” PMK founder S Ramadoss said in a statement.
He also recalled that more than 500 scholars led by famous Tamil scholar Maraimalai Adigalar had in 1921 decided that Tamil New Year’s Day should only be celebrated in January and not in April. Day change proponents say that Chitirai (April) became the first month of the Tamil calendar due to the influence of Sanskrit scholars.
The BJP has warned the DMK against changing the Tamil New Year’s Day. State Unit Chief K Annamalai said the DMK was trying to ‘trick’ Tamils into trying to change New Year’s Day from April 14, which has been a ‘long’ tradition.
The DMK has already decided to change Tamil Nadu to July 18 from November 1, which was announced by the previous AIADMK government. DMK’s claim is that although Madras State came into being on 1st November, the state was renamed on 18th July 1967 and hence the state day should be observed on this day- the.