‘Tamizhagam’ row: Pongal invitations by Governor RN Ravi spark fresh controversy | The Financial Express

‘Tamizhagam’ row: Pongal invitations by Governor RN Ravi spark fresh controversy

CPI(M) MP Su Venkatesan took to Twitter to highlight that the Pongal invitations sent by the Governor are different from those he sent in April last year.

‘Tamizhagam’ row: Pongal invitations by Governor RN Ravi spark fresh controversy
Tamil Nadu Governor R N Ravi's customary address at the first session of the state legislative assembly 2023, in Chennai on Monday. (ANI Photo)

Amid resentment over his suggestion to rename Tamil Nadu as ‘Tamizhagam’ last week, Governor RN Ravi courted fresh controversy over the Pongal invitations sent out on his behalf, referring to himself as ‘Tamizhaga Aalunar’ or the ‘Governor of Tamizhagam’.

The invitations for the Pongal festivities on January 12, sent out with the Union government’s logo rather than that of the state government, come a day after the Governor staged a walkout from the state Assembly over objections to his speech by Chief Minister MK Stalin.

The invitations sent out to VIPs and government functionaries in Tamil Nadu on Tuesday stand in contrast to those sent by the Governor’s office on earlier occasions, including the one sent for the Tamil New Year celebrations in April 2022, which referred to him as the Governor of Tamil Nadu.

CPI(M) MP from Madurai, Su Venkatesan, took to Twitter to highlight the difference between the two invitations sent within less than a year.

“Last time the invitation letter had the Tamil Nadu government’s motto. This time the invitation has only the Indian government’s motto in three places. He refused to use it because Tamil Nadu is written in our motto,” the Member of Parliament said, wondering whether the Governor will also do away with other perks since those too come from the tax paid by the people of Tamil Nadu.

Although the use of the term ‘Tamizhaga’ has been common in the state, it has acquired a different connotation ever since the Governor suggested that the state be renamed. The word ‘Tamizhagam’ has been used in discussions pertaining to matters of the state — even while referring to the Chief Minister as ‘Tamizhaga Muthalvar’ (Muthalvar means CM).

At a recent event in Chennai, even Health minister Ma Subramanian checked himself after he used the word and remarked how its use itself “could create trouble these days”.

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First published on: 10-01-2023 at 19:07 IST