He said that his reference turned into a controversy without people understanding the basis of his speech and clarified that he is not against the word “Tamil Nadu”.
Tamil Nadu governor RN Ravi on Wednesday issued an official clarification that it was “erroneous and far-fetched” to interpret his recent comments on “Tamizhagam” as a suggestion to change the name of the state.
At an event in Raj Bhavan on January 4, 2023 organised to felicitate the volunteers of Kashi -Tamil Sangamam, a recently concluded month-long festival celebrating the age-old cultural connection between Tamil people with Kashi, the Governor referred to the word “Tamizhagam”. “While dwelling upon the historical cultural connect between the two, I referred to the word ‘Tamizhagam’. In those days, there was no Tamil Nadu. Hence in a historical-cultural context, I referred to the word ‘Tamizhagam’ as a ‘more appropriate expression,” he clarified.
He said that his reference turned into a controversy without people understanding the basis of his speech. He clarified that he is not against the word “Tamil Nadu”. ” An interpretation or inference that it was a suggestion to change the name of Tamil Nadu is erroneous and far-fetched,” he added.
While addressing a programme felicitating organisers and volunteers of the Kashi Tamil Sangamam, held at the Raj Bhavan in Chennai on January 4, Ravi reportedly commented hat the word ‘Tamizhagam’ was a more accurate term for Tamil Nadu. The governor was heavily criticised for using a name other than the one established by the Constitution.
At the centre of the debate is the word “nadu” which can be literally translated to mean country. At the event, the Governor was quoted as saying, “Here in Tamil Nadu, a different kind of narrative has been created. Everything applicable for the whole of the country, Tamil Nadu will say no. It has become a habit. So many theses have been written — all false and poor fiction. This must be broken. Truth must prevail. Tamizhagam is a more appropriate word to call it. The rest of the country suffered a lot of devastation at the hands of foreigners for a long time.”
The reference caused much furore with DMK’s Kanimozhi saying that the name was changed by CN Annadurai, Madras state’s fourth CM and Tamil Nadu’s first CM and that the state will not undergo any change of name. She said the comment was indifferent to the sentiments of people of Tamil Nadu.