First Anti-Hindi agitations of Tamil Nadu - Timeline

Anti hindi agitation - 1948

                                      I was going through the Aringar C.N Annadurai's articles a few days before. He is one of the phenomenal scholar and politician in Tamilnadu. I saw an article which was published in his newspaper "Dravida Nadu" titled as "Tamilan Thodutha Por" which means " The war by Tamils" in 1965.  I am going to write a timeline for anti-Hindi agitation scenario here since there is no proper timeline for the movement ( In English) available. We were completing 50 years of Dravidian politics in Tamilnadu successfully but we forget to showcase its important things in English or in Tamil to the present generation of Tamilnadu and that were the parties like DMK  slides down from the youngsters. 

Before independence whole country (India) is protesting against the British rule in India But Madras presidency is protesting against Hindi imposition. Nehru and Gandhi believed Hindi as  common language will unite Indian people together for protesting against British. 

Aringar Anna also raised question against Mahatma Gandhi: "Gandhi urged the minority Dravidians to study Hindi by arguing Hindi is the single largest language spoken in India. Anna (DMK) pointed out that by the same logic the national bird of the country ought to be a crow and not the peacock."
(Note: Jawaharlal Nehru who done his education in western countries impressed by Aringar anna literacy in English. Anna is well versed in English).

The war by Tamils ( தமிழன் தொடுத்த போர் )
(Timeline) (நாள் குறிப்பு)

10- 08-1937
Chief minister Rajagopalachari announced on this day that Hindi will be used as common language in Madras presidency.
(இந்தி புகுத்துவது பற்றி முதன்முதல் முதலமைச்சர் ஆச்சாரியார் குறிப்பட்ட நாள்)

The day when we warned for imposition of hindi, using as a common language in madras presidency. Huge meeting was organised in Trichy.
(இந்தி வேண்டாம் என்று இறுதி எச்சரிக்கை கொடுத்த சென்னை மாநில இந்தி எதிர்ப்பாளர் திருச்சியில் கூடிய நாள் )

Again a last call against the government meet was organised by them in Kanchipuram to urge the government against the rule.
(அந்த எச்சரிக்கையை மீண்டும் வலியுறுத்திய சென்னை மாநில இந்தி எதிர்ப்பாளர் மாநாடு காஞ்சியில் கூடிய நாள்)

Hindi was imposed officially on this day.
(இந்தி புகுத்தபட்ட நாள்)


Huge protest and Conference was organized on this day which plays important role for the protest. (திருச்சி பாசறையில் இந்திப்போர் மந்திராலோசனைக் கூட்டம் கூடிய நாள்)


First protest against Hindi was started on this day. (இந்தி போர் ஆரம்பம்)

(தமிழர் பெரும்படை புறப்பட்ட நாள்)

The day when we took stand as "Tamil Nadu is for tamils".
(தமிழ்நாடு தமிழருக்கே என்னும் முழக்கம் முதலில் எழுந்த நாள்)


C.N. Annadurai was imprisoned on this day. (தளபதி அண்ணாதுரை சிறை சென்ற நாள்)

Mangaimar was imprisoned on this day. (மங்கைமார் முதலில் சிறை புகுந்த நாள்)

Protest leader periyar was imprisoned on this day. (போர் தலைவர் பெரியார் சிறை சென்ற நாள்)

Tamil veteran Natarajan died on this day. (தமிழ் வீரன் நடராசன் மாண்ட நாள்)

Tamil veteran Thalamuthu died on this day. (தமிழ் வீரன் தாளமுத்து மாண்ட நாள்)

Periyar was released from the jail. (தலைவர் பெரியார் விடுதலையான நாள்)

For the first time- the arrested protesters were released in ant- Hindi protests (இந்தி எதிர்ப்புத் தொண்டர்கள் திடீர் விடுதலை பெற்றது - முதல் முறை)

Second time release of protesters. (இரண்டாம் முறை)


Once again,Tamils made huge protest against centre in Kanchipuram.
(காஞ்சியில் தமிழர் மீண்டும் போர் முரசு கொட்டிய நாள்)

Periyar warned centre that " The protest will continue if the imposition is not taken from Tamilnadu. ("இந்தி போகவில்லையேல் மீண்டும் போர்" என்று தலைவர் பெரியார் இறுதி எச்சரிக்கை விடுத்த நாள்)

Hindi imposition was terminated on this day. (கட்டாய இந்தி ஒழிந்த நாள் - தமிழன் வெற்றி பெற்ற நாள்)

Even though the imposition of hindi and protest were happened later in upcoming years. This protest is the first one which organizes students people largely to gather for upcoming protests in larger number.

Main protest of Hindi imposition :

This is the first protest happened in Southern india against the Hindi imposition. After Few years in 1946 ,Protest against Hindi Imposition in schools were started.The largest anti-Hindi imposition agitations in this period occurred in 1948–50. After India obtained independence in 1947, the Congress Government at the Centre urged all states to make Hindi compulsory in schools. The Congress Government of Madras Presidency under Omandur Ramasamy Reddiar complied and made Hindi compulsory from the academic year 1948–49. It also introduced a minimum mark qualification in Hindi for the promotion of students to higher classes. Periyar once again launched an anti-Hindi imposition agitation. The 1948 agitation was supported by former Congress nationalists like M. P. Sivagnanam and Thiru. Vi. Ka, who recanted their earlier pro-Hindi policies. On 17 July, the DK convened an all party anti-Hindi conference to oppose the compulsory Hindi teaching. As in the agitation of 1938–40, this agitation was also characterized by strikes, black flag demonstrations and anti-Hindi processions. When Rajaji (then the Governor-General of India) visited Madras on 23 August, the Dravida Kazhagam staged a black flag demonstration protesting against his visit. On 27 August, Periyar and Annadurai were arrested. The Government did not change its position on Hindi and the agitation continued. On 18 December, Periyar and other DK leaders were arrested again. A compromise was reached between the government and agitators. The government stopped the legal action against the agitators and they in turn dropped the agitation on 26 December 1948. Eventually, the government made Hindi teaching optional from the academic year 1950–51. Students who did not want to learn Hindi were allowed to participate in other school activities during Hindi classes.

A memorial for those who died in the Anti-Hindi imposition agitations in Chennai

The anti-Hindi imposition agitations ensured the passage of the Official Languages Act of 1963 and its amendment in 1967, thus ensuring the continued use of English as an official language of India. They effectively brought about the "virtual indefinite policy of bilingualism" of the Indian Republic.

Story of Dravida nadu in the meanwhile:
The Madras presidency as Dravida Nadu, the separate country along with separation of Pakistan from India speaks have happened in Mumbai. Periyar met Jinnah in Mumbai for this purpose. Even Jinnah came to Chennai, Periyar have written several letters for this issue to Jinnah. Periyar thought we can get separation along with Jinnah. Students in Tamilnadu believed this separation from India. It is one of the main reason why large number students attended the protest against Hindi imposition in 1948.  Anna and Periyar played a major role in this separation but Nehru stopped the separation with the rule. Then Anna changed is Attitude towards separation. Many books were available to know deep/better about this issue.


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