Wednesday, November 30, 2022

PM stresses on preserving legacy of Tamil

It is the responsibility of 130 crore Indians to preserve the legacy of Tamil and ignoring it will be a great disservice to the nation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Saturday as he stressed on “removing linguistic differences and establishing emotional unity”.
In his inaugural speech at the Kashi Tamil Sangamam here, the prime minister lamented that despite having one of the world’s oldest living languages, Tamil, “we lack in honouring it fully”.
“This is the responsibility of 130 crore Indians to preserve the legacy of Tamil and enrich it.
‘’If we ignore Tamil we do a great disservice to the nation and if we keep Tamil confined in restrictions, we will do great harm to it. We have to remember to remove linguistic differences and establish emotional unity,” Modi said.
He hailed Kashi and Tamil Nadu as timeless centres of culture (‘sanskriti’) and civilisation (‘sabhyata’).
Both regions are also the centres of the world’s oldest languages like Sanskrit and Tamil, the prime minister noted.
“In our country, there is an importance of ‘sangams’ (confluences). From the confluence of rivers and streams to ideas-ideology, knowledge-science and societies-cultures, we have celebrated all the confluences,” he said. The Kashi-Tamil Sangamam is a celebration of India’s diversity and uniqueness. It is special on its own and is unparalleled, he said.
While cultural capital Kashi has encapsulated entire India, “our Tamil Nadu and the Tamil culture represent the pride in India’s ancient legacy.
“If in Kashi there is Baba Vishwanath, then in Tamil Nadu there is the blessing of Lord Rameshwaram. Both Kashi and Tamil Nadu are ‘Shivmay’ (drenched in the devotion of Lord Shiv) and ‘Shaktimay’ (drenched in the devotion of Goddess Shakti),” he said at the event in his Lok Sabha constituency.
There is a Dakshin Kashi in Tamil Nadu too, the prime minister noted.
He said Kashi-Kanchi have an important place among the ‘Sapta Puris’, the seven pilgrimage centres that, according to Hindu beliefs, lead to salvation.
The Sapta Puris are – Ayodhya, Mathura, Maya (Mayapuri or Haridwar), Kashi (Varanasi), Kanchi (Kanchipuram), Avantika (Ujjain) and Dwaravati (Dwaraka).
Highlighting contributions made by scholars from the South, Modi said, “’In my experience, from Ramanujacharya and Shankaracharya to Rajaji and Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan (who was the former Vice-Chancellor of BHU), without understanding the philosophy of India as per the scholars of the South, we cannot know India.”
The prime minister said that a country with a rich heritage should be proud of its legacy.
“This Sangam is also as pious as that of Ganga and Yamuna.” The prime minister said that the Sangamam is a matter of experiencing more than words and expressed the hope that the people of Kashi will leave no stone unturned in providing memorable hospitality.
Modi expressed the wish that such events are organised in Tamil Nadu and other southern states so that youngsters from other parts of the county visit and absorb the culture there.
The gains of this Sangamam need to be taken forward through research and this seed should become a giant tree, he said, as he concluded his speech.
“We have to strengthen this tradition and heritage, which dates back thousands of years. This was to become the unity-thread of the country. But, unfortunately, not much effort was made for this.
“Today the Kashi Tamil Sangamam will become a platform for this resolution. It will remind us of our duties, and also give the energy to strengthen national unity,” he said.
The prime minister greeted the audience in Tamil, and a Tamil translation of his Hindi speech was also done on this occasion as a large number of people in the audience were from Tamil Nadu.
“India is that country, which for the thousand of years through the belief ‘sam wo manansi jaantaam’ (let your minds be one in agreement), has, by knowing each other’s mind and by giving respect, experienced a natural cultural unity,” he said.
The prime minister congratulated the Ministry of Education and Uttar Pradesh government and thanked central universities like IIT, Madras and BHU for extending their support to the programme.
Throwing light on the tradition of remembering 12 Jyotirlingas after waking up in the morning, Modi said that “we start our day by remembering the spiritual unity of the country”.
More than 2,500 delegates from Tamil Nadu are visiting Varanasi and will participate in seminars and interact with local people of similar trade, profession and interest.
A month-long exhibition of handlooms, handicrafts, books, documentaries, cuisine, art forms, history and tourist places of the two regions will also be organised here.
The Tamil Sangamam conclave in the pilgrim city is part of the prime minister’s initiative of ‘Ek Bharat-Shreshtha Bharat’ that portrays unity among the cultural diversity of various states and Union Territories.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Governor Anandiben Patel, Union Ministers- Dr L Murugan, Dharmendra Pradhan- and Member of Parliament Ilaiyaraaja were among others present at the event.

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