Why Face-offs With Tamil Nadu Govt Sparked Governor Ravi’s Meets With Amit Shah Thrice in 9 Months

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Edited By: Oindrila Mukherjee

Last Updated: January 20, 2023, 09:23 IST

The year 2023 began with governor RN Ravi suggesting that 'Tamizhagam' was a better name for Tamil Nadu, which led to massive protests across the state. (Image: IANS/File)

The yr 2023 started with governor RN Ravi suggesting that ‘Tamizhagam’ was a greater identify for Tamil Nadu, which led to huge protests throughout the state. (Image: IANS/File)

Despite earlier clashes between governors and ruling events in Tamil Nadu, the latest developments have been unprecedented in the political historical past of the state

Tamil Nadu governor RN Ravi, who has been in the thick of controversy, has visited Union Home Minister Amit Shah thrice in the final 9 months to debate political developments and face-offs in the state.

Despite earlier clashes between governors and ruling events in Tamil Nadu, the latest developments have been unprecedented in the political historical past of the state.

Governor versus DMK

The yr 2023 started with Ravi suggesting that ‘Tamizhagam’ was a greater identify for Tamil Nadu, whereas addressing a felicitation programme of organisers and volunteers of the Kashi Tamil Sangamam at Raj Bhavan on January 4. This led to an enormous uproar, and protests erupted throughout the state.

The concern was additional precipitated per week later when the governor determined to go off script and dropped references to Dravidianism, skipping names of leaders like BR Ambedkar, Periyar, Okay Kamaraj, CN Annadurai and Okay Karunanidhi. Ravi walked out of the meeting in a huff even earlier than the nationwide anthem was performed, which obtained sharp criticism from a number of quarters.

On January 13, he had referred to as on President Droupadi Murmu in addition to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and likewise briefly met Shah solely days after he had walked out of the meeting. According to sources, the assembly with Shah was additionally to grasp why the connection between Raj Bhavan and the Tamil Nadu authorities had soured and he was requested to carry the state of affairs below management.

Within per week, on January 18 (Wednesday), Ravi as soon as once more met Shah as there have been no indicators of the controversy dying down. Amid calls for of recalling the governor and his effigies being burnt, Ravi did a volte-face, and a communique from the Raj Bhavan was issued clarifying the ‘Tamizhagam’ controversy. In it, he mentioned he had referred to the phrase in the “historic cultural context”. He also called it “erroneous” and “far-fetched” to infer that he had suggested a change of name for the state of Tamil Nadu.

The NEET controversy

There was also a meeting with Shah in April 2022, soon after an incident where the governor was met with protesters waving black flags in Tamil Nadu’s Mayiladuthurai. Slogans were raised against him and protesters belonging to the DMK, VCK and Left parties expressed their dismay over the delay by the Raj Bhavan in forwarding the Anti-NEET Bill for the President’s assent. This bill was passed twice in the state legislative assembly.

In this meeting, Shah took stock of the NEET situation in the state and it is learnt that the meeting was crucial, especially at a time when the BJP has been trying to make inroads into the southern state that has always voted in favour of Dravidian parties.

Defamation suit against DMK worker

On returning to Chennai after his Delhi meeting on Wednesday, Ravi filed a defamation case against a now-suspended DMK worker, Shivaji Krishnamoorthy.

The case, filed in a Chennai court, is against Krishnamoorthy for his alleged use of expletives against the governor when he famously skipped portions of the speech prepared by the state government. The suspended DMK leader had said if Ravi could not take Ambedkar’s name, he should go to Kashmir.

“If you (Governor) do not read out the speech given by the Tamil Nadu government, then go to Kashmir, and we will send terrorists so that they’ll gun you down,” Krishnamoorthy had mentioned whereas addressing a public gathering quickly after Ravi’s walkout.

The ruling DMK instantly distanced itself from Krishnamoorthy and suspended him for “violating social gathering self-discipline and bringing disrepute to the social gathering”.

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