Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu calls for creating a safe and conducive environment for women to grow and attain their full potential

New Delhi : The Vice President,  M. Venkaiah Naidu today called for ending all forms of discrimination against women and urged everyone to work towards creating a safe and conducive environment for them to grow and attain their full potential.

Addressing an event organised to mark the 100th death anniversary of Mahakavi Subramania Bharati at Parliament House today, the Vice president emphasised Indian culture always revered women as an epitome of divinity. Quoting Bharathiyar’s vision for equality, he stressed the need to eradicate all barriers and discriminations that divide society on the lines of caste, religion, region, language and gender.

Recalling his recent visit to the house in Puducherry, where the revolutionary poet had stayed for more than 11 years while fighting for the freedom of the country,  Naidu urged the younger generation to take inspiration from the life of this great poet.

Quoting Mahakavi Bharati’s words ‘the best of times lies ahead!’, Naidu asked the youth to dedicate themselves to the cause of nation-building and create a developed India—an India free from poverty, illiteracy, hunger and discrimination. “ I am sure that our youth, with their tremendous energy and enthusiasm, can power India’s progress and fast-track development”, he added.

Describing Mahakavi Subramania as one of India’s greatest literary geniuses, the Vice President said that he was a multi-faceted personality—a poet, journalist, freedom fighter and social reformer who deeply cared for the poor and downtrodden. “His evocative poetry and writings played an important role in infusing the spirit of nationalism among the people of Tamil Nadu and India”, he added.

Praising the ‘National Poet’ for his extraordinary prowess in spontaneous poetry, the Vice President said that it was a rare achievement that he was conferred the title of ‘Bharati’ at the tender age of eleven in the Ettayapuram Durbar. Through his new forms and expressions, simple words, vernacular idiom and lyrical rhythms, Mahakavi Bharati’s poetry heralded a new era in Tamil literature, he said.

Recalling Bharati’s close association with national leaders like Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Bipin Chandra Pal, Lala Lajpat Rai, V. O. Chidambaram Pillai and Sri Aurobindo, the Vice President said that during the dark days of colonial rule, Mahakavi rose like a Sun with his powerful message of nationalism to dispel the darkness that had engulfed our nation.

Referring to the great poet’s meeting with Sister Nivedita,  Naidu said that this meeting turned him into an even stronger proponent of women’s freedom and empowerment. “As the editor of Chakravartini magazine, Bharati announced that the goal of Chakravartini was the empowerment of women,” he recalled.

Praising Bharati’s simplicity of composition and directness of expression, the Vice President said that his songs touched the hearts and minds of common people and filled them with nationalism and patriotic zeal.

Stating that Mahakavi Bharati was extremely well versed in multiple languages including Tamil, English, French, Sanskrit, Hindi, Hindustani and Telugu, Shri Naidu said that he had lived the life of a tireless journalist, espousing the cause of free India through his prose and poetry. He said that the poet had an open mind to blend anything new which was good for humanity.

Highlighting the importance of commemorating the life events of such great personalities like Bharati, the Vice President said that it was important to transmit their ideas and legacy to the future generations. He lauded Vanavil Cultural Centre for celebrating the Bharathiyar’s birthday every year by fulfilling the great poet’s desire of being honoured with a ‘a tinkling palanquin, golden shawl, a purse and a retinue’ which he expressed to the Zamindar of Ettayapuram after his release from prison.

“This is a wonderful way of remembering the legacy of the great poet,” the Vice President said and called for promoting the life and works of Mahakavi Subramania Bharati to kindle the spark of nationalism, culture, spirituality, and social awareness among the countrymen.

The Vice President also appreciated the efforts of the Union Ministry of Culture, Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts and Delhi Tamil Sangam for coming together to observe the 100th Punya Tithi of Bharathiyar in a befitting manner.

Shri Arjun Ram Meghwal, Hon’ble Minister of State for Culture & Parliamentary Affairs,  K. Ravi, Founder, Vanavil Cultural Centre, Dr. Sudha Seshayyan, Vice Chancellor, Tamil Nadu M.G.R Medical University, Chennai, Dr. Gurmeet Singh, Vice Chancellor, Pondicherry University, Dr. Rajkumar Bharati, great grandson of Mahakavi Subramania Bharati, Shri V Renganathan, President, Delhi Tamil Sangam and others were present during the event.

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