Kongu Nadu debate in Tamil Nadu explained

An inventory of latest Union Cupboard ministers issued by the BJP has triggered a debate in political circles in Tamil Nadu, in addition to on social media, by referring to ‘Kongu Nadu’, the casual title for a area within the western a part of the state. The record mentions new minister L Murugan as hailing from ‘Kongu Nadu’. This has led to allegations that the BJP of making an attempt to bifurcate the state, with the ruling DMK-Congress alliance saying the “agenda” won’t succeed.

However the place is Kongu Nadu?

‘Kongu Nadu’ is neither a spot with a PIN code nor a reputation given formally to any area. It’s a generally used title for a part of western Tamil Nadu.

In Tamil literature, it was known as one of many 5 areas of historical Tamil Nadu. There have been mentions of ‘Kongu Nadu’ in Sangam literature as a separate territory.

Within the current state of Tamil Nadu, the time period is informally used to check with a area that features the districts of Nilgiris, Coimbatore, Tirupur, Erode, Karur, Namakkal and Salem, in addition to Oddanchatram and Vedasandur in Dindgul district, and Pappireddipatti in Dharmapuri district. The title derives from Kongu Vellala Gounder, an OBC group with a major presence in these districts.

The area consists of distinguished companies and industrial hubs at Namakkal, Salem, Tirupur and Coimbatore. It has additionally been thought of an AIADMK stronghold within the current previous, and can also be the place the BJP’s restricted affect within the state is concentrated.

How did the controversy break?

The record launched by the BJP profiles each new minister with the names of the place and state she or he comes from, reminiscent of minister John Barla from “Jalpaiguri, West Bengal”, and Dr Munjapara Mahendrabhai from “Surendranagar, Gujarat”. It refers to Murugan as being from “Kongu Nadu, Tamil Nadu”.

As social media broke into debate over an alleged try and bifurcate the state, some BJP handles had been seen supporting the thought of ‘Kongu Nadu’ — in a state the place their social gathering has little presence besides for his or her current seats they gained in alliance with the AIADMK.

Is there any floor for the allegations a couple of deliberate bifurcation?

In contrast to Telangana or Uttarakhand, there has by no means been a requirement or discussions a couple of separate Kongu Nadu within the fashionable political historical past of Tamil Nadu. The talk, due to this fact, lacks any political or social context. Many, nonetheless, see it as a counter from the BJP to the DMK’s assertive stand in using the term Ondriya Arasu (Union authorities) slightly than Madhiya Arasu (central authorities).

“I don’t suppose there may be a direct plan. They had been planting a seed truly, and triggered that debate. Hereafter, the demand for ‘Kongu Nadu’ won’t be a brand new problem,” mentioned a former AIADMK minister. One other AIADMK minister mentioned the thought of ‘Kongu Nadu’ can backfire on the BJP if it pushes it for votes.

In electoral politics, nonetheless, it’s seen as the one area the place the BJP and RSS have one thing of a presence. Two of the 4 seats the BJP gained within the current Meeting polls, because of the AIADMK alliance, had been in western Tamil Nadu.

Has the BJP denied the allegations?

The BJP has certainly denied any transfer to divide the state. But, it has additionally referred to the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

“Vallanadu is close to my space. Varusanadu is close to Theni. Can we make states out of all these Nadu (areas). Why is the DMK afraid of the Kongu Nadu debate? The whole lot is Tamil Nadu, nothing to fret about,” mentioned BJP Legislature Social gathering chief Nainar Nagendran. “… However on the similar time, remember that Andhra Pradesh was divided into two, and UP additionally. In any case, if it’s the want of the folks, it will be the accountability of the federal government to fulfil it,” he mentioned.

When journalists requested BJP state basic secretary Karu Nagarajan whether or not the Centre plans to bifurcate the state, he mentioned “that is the primary stage”. “It has occurred like that in different states as nicely. Telangana is an instance. If speaking about Ondriya Arasu (Union authorities) is their want, it’s also the want of individuals to name it ‘Kongu Nadu’,” he mentioned.

However Nagarajan later advised The Indian Express: “It’s a mere social media debate. I’m not even certain of the origin of this dialogue. Speaking about ‘Kongu Nadu’ is like Tamil events that used to have alliances with UPA and NDA on the Centre now calling it ‘Ondriya Arasu’. There may be nothing from the BJP formally. Anyway, the folks’s want can be vital in such a problem.”

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How significantly have the BJP’s rivals taken this?

Leaders of the ruling alliance have mentioned Tamil Nadu can’t be divided, with the Congress condemning this “agenda of the BJP”.

“No one wants to fret about such reviews. Tamil Nadu is protected underneath the federal government now,” mentioned DMK MP Kanimozhi.

State Congress chief Ok S Alagiri, too, mentioned it’s not possible to divide Tamil Nadu. “If it occurs, that can set a precedent and result in the formation of many such states. Dividing Tamil Nadu is an not possible dream, even when some political events with vested pursuits would like to push for it… This agenda of the BJP won’t succeed; we strongly condemn it,” Alagiri mentioned.

T T V Dhinakaran, the insurgent AIADMK chief who’s now heading the Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK), mentioned the federal government ought to nip within the bud such “mischievous voices”. He famous there was no demand for a brand new state from any part of the folks.

AIADMK Ok P Munusamy, too, condemned those that are triggering debates about dividing the state.

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