Tamil scholars in Chennai speak about Thirukkural in times of controversy

Tamil scholar Periyannan

Chennai: In recent times, Tamil poet Thiruvalluvar has been subjected to a sea of controversies in national politics. However, his work, Thirukkural, is a work that still holds ground no matter how old it is. Tamil language and enthusiasts from the neighbourhood share their two cents on the saint and the Tamil festival ahead of Thiruvalluvar Day.

“The New Year for Tamilians is celebrated as Thai Puthhandu on the first day of Tamil month Thai. While there is a lot of controversy surrounding him, the principles that he has shared in his two stanzas with just seven or eight words is relevant till date – be it a king or a normal person,” S Kanchana, principal, Beta Matriculation Higher Secondary School, tells.

“Only Tamilians celebrate their New Year as a festival for four-long days with elaborate arrangements despite the diversity in terms of caste and community,” tells Tamil scholar Periyannan who is also the president of All India Tamil Writers’ Association.

Kanchana further tells that the importance is understood by the number of languages to which the text has been

S Kanchana.

translated. “The poems are present in every Tamil schoolbook and marks are allotted for it. However, it should not be learnt merely for marks but for implementing it in life,” the principal adds.

Periyannan points out to the generic nature of Thirukkural. “Although it is written in Tamil, he does not mention about writing from his land – Tamilnadu or catering only to the State people. The stanzas are common to every single person,” he says.


Bhavani Prabhakar