The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi on 19 November inaugurated ‘Kashi Tamil Sangamam’ – a month-long programme being organised in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh. The objective of the programme is to celebrate, reaffirm and rediscover the age-old links between Tamil Nadu and Kashi – two of the country’s most important and ancient seats of learning. More than 2500 delegates from Tamil Nadu will be visiting Kashi. During the programme, the Prime Minister also released a book ‘Tirukkural’ along with its translation into 13 languages. He also witnessed a cultural programme followed by aarti.
Union Education & Skill Development Minister Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, Governor of Uttar Pradesh, Smt Anandiben Patel, Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath, Minister of State, Dr L Murugan and Member of Parliament, Shri Ilaiyaraaja were those present on the occasion among others.
“This is my experience that without understanding scholars from South India like Ramanujacharya, Shankaracharya, Raja Ji to Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan, we simply can not understand Indian philosophy”
Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister expressed delight upon the gathering being held in the most ancient living city in the world. He remarked on the occasion that Kashi and Tamil Nadu are timeless centres of our culture and civilizations.
The Prime Minister underlined Tamil Nadu’s contribution to the development of Kashi and recalled that Tamil Nadu-born Dr Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan was the Vice Chancellor of BHU. He also mentioned the Vedic scholar Rajeshwar Shastri who lived in Kashi even though he had his roots in Tamil Nadu. He said that the people of Kashi also miss Pattaviram Shastri who lived on Hanuman Ghat in Kashi. The Prime Minister informed about the Kashi Kaam Koteshwar Panchayatan Mandir which is a Tamilian temple on the banks of Harishchandra Ghat, and the two-hundred-year-old Kumarswamy Matt and Markande Ashram on Kedar Ghat. He also stated that many people from Tamil Nadu have been living near the banks of Kedar Ghat and Hanuman Ghat, and have made immense contributions towards Kashi for several generations. The Prime Minister also mentioned the great poet and revolutionary, Shri Subramania Bharathi who hailed from Tamil Nadu but lived in Kashi for many years. He informed about BHU’s pride and privilege in establishing the chair dedicated to Subramania Bharati.
The Prime Minister said that it was through this attitude of breaking language and surpassing the intellectual distance that Swami Kumargurupar came to Kashi and made it his Karmbhoomi and got Kedareshwar Mandir constructed in Kashi. Later, his disciples got Kashi Vishwanath temple constructed in Thanjavur on the banks of river Kaveri. The Prime Minister reiterated the link between Tamil scholars and Kashi by mentioning personalities like Manonmaniyam Sundaranar who wrote a Tamil State song and the connection of his guru with Kashi. The Prime Minister also remembered the role of Ramayana and Mahabharata written by Raja ji in connecting the North and the South. “This is my experience that without understanding scholars from South India like Ramanujacharya, Shankaracharya, Raja Ji to Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan, we simply can not understand Indian philosophy”, Shri Modi said.