Home > General Knowledge, Politics > 64/365 – Dravidar Kazhagam

64/365 – Dravidar Kazhagam

Dravidar Kazhagam or Dravida Kazhagam was the first fully Dravidian party in India. It was a radical party formed by E. V. Ramaswamy, also called Thanthai Periyar (The Noble Father) of erstwhile Madras Presidency.



Its original goals were to eradicate the ills of the existing caste system including untouchability and on a grander scale to obtain a “Dravida Nadu” or Dravidian nation mainly from the Madras Presidency.

The founders were motivated by theories that the Brahmins and Aryans were wreaking havoc on the local Dravidian populace. The DK thus became the first fully Dravidian party and would in turn give birth to many other Dravidian parties like the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK),MDMK,DMDK  etc., over the course of time.

The roots of the Dravidar Kazhagam lie in the Self Respect Movement, founded by Periyar E. V. Ramasamy. Periyar formed the Self Respect Movement in 1925, breaking in the process from the Indian National Congress party of which he had been a member until then. The Self Respect Movement represented “non-Brahmins”. The non-Brahmin community was defined to include all South Indians other than Brahmins.

The South Indian Liberal Federation (also called the Justice Party) was an elite organization, formed in 1916, which also claimed to promote non-Brahmin interests. The Self Respect Movement and the Justice Party were merged in 1938 under Periyar’s leadership. The name of this party was changed to the Dravidar Kazhagam (DK) in 1944, at the same time that the party was more formally organized.

The party at its inception retained the flag of the South Indian Liberal Federation which had a picture of a traditional type of balance instrument, called tarasu in Tamil, signifying the idea of equality. The Dravidar Kazhagam was founded not only for equality but for ‘proportionate rights’ according to population. its central theme was to remove the degraded status imposed on Dravidians and to lead to a bright future.

To denote this, the Dravidar Kazhagam adopted a black flag with a red circle inside it, the black signifying their degradation – social and economic – and the red denoting the movement for uplift.

The DK opposed Brahminical social, political and ritual dominance, and aimed to form a separate country of Dravida Nadu, to include either all of South India or the predominantly Tamil-speaking regions. Its sharp opposition to religion, especially Brahminical Hinduism, was widely popular. Dravidian ideology is based on staunch anti-Brahminism, and is anti-Sanskrit and anti-North India. However, it never became a full-fledged political party by choice; instead, it prefers to be a cultural and social reformist movement and a pressure group leaving active politics to its progeny, DMK and AIADMK.


Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dravidar_Kazhagam

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