Lessons for Tamils and India from Tamil Nadu insular voting mentality
Posted on May 19th, 2014

Shenali D Waduge

 A harbinger to the largest democratic exercise in history was the lone state of Tamil Nadu desiring to be different from the rest of India. They thought differently and voted differently. Whereas the Modi wave was consistent throughout India it was not so in Tamil Nadu. In Tamil Nadu, their unanimous choice was Jayalalitha and not because of any accolades for good governance or high levels of integrity. It was simply because she was Tamil and her AIADMK manifesto promised Eelam or a separate Tamil State. For Tamils the promise of such was enough whether it was in Sri Lanka or India and should caution any Indian Government of the looming internal and regional security dangers given that Eelam has now been hijacked as a Western agenda to create a pan Christian new state giving the West their much sought after foothold into Asia fulfilling indirectly its commercial and geopolitical advantage as well. A good look at all those promoting the ‘devolution’ compromise reveals they are paid agents of that larger plan. Additionally, the voting pattern in Tamil Nadu brings out the insular nature of Tamils that is emerging in other nations that Tamils reside and beckons greater attention in view of the fatal attractions that may result in dangerous consequences.

 Why Indians voted for Modi

Many Indians had become fed up with the Congress family hegemony. Six decades after independence 400million Indians were still without electricity. Modi’s Gujarat template was good enough reason to put faith in him as a doer. Moreover, Indians were beginning to wonder exactly where India was heading with a puppet PM and a pro-Western Gandhi widow.

 Modi’s victory poses a challenge for the secularists. Their unchallenged imperial agenda will come under review. The recent calls for national development to be kept distanced from nationalists are a perfect example where Modi and team would falter if they distance themselves from the very sources that brought them to power. When nationalists are solely driven by their desire to preserve the historical and cultural heritage how can they be an impediment to development?

 A mistake most popular Governments end up making to be eligible for aid and investment carrots for these gestures come coated with ulterior motives to remove the nationalism among the voting populace. It is why we are ever cautious of untrustworthy devolution proponents in Sri Lanka who were to expectation quick to declare that the BJP victory heralded a dawn of a very dark era for South Asia (Sri Lankan Minister Vasudeva belongs to that gang) Modi’s victory at best has shown that united, Indians can win and win big and minorities cannot dictate as every occasion the minority politicians have used their minority status as a personal bargaining tool not translated into bringing any merit to the minorities blindly voting for them.

 Modi votes – Muslims voted but not Tamils

The election result of India has been a surprise to all political pundits locally and internationally especially those that rely on character assassination via media to bring down leaders. There was nothing Modi was not called. Media reluctantly saluted the Gujarat state development by continuously portraying Modi as anti-Muslim to drive a wedge in the 175million Muslims in India (15% of the 1.2billion Indians). Yet, poll data reveals that 45 out of the 87 Muslim strongholds voted for Modi. Large numbers of Muslims voters voted for Modi in Assam, Guwahati and Chandni Chowk in the national capital.

 When even the Muslims voted for Modi, Tamils voted differently.

 Insular Tamils

Is there a history to Tamils wanting to be different? It was Tamils who helped British form the Madras Regiment, India’s oldest army regiment. Tamils formed the majority of the colonial indentured labor force 2million of whom were transported to work on British plantations all over the world and the allegiance and servitude towards white rulers has a historical past and favoritism towards Tamils by colonial rulers forms the basis of the roots of issues currently emerging.

 Extending the argument of insular is the fact that Tamil Nadu remains the only state that refuses to use Hindi as its official language – another example of Tamil Nadu’s refusal to integrate. The Sri Lankan Government has made the same mistake, instead of insisting that all citizens know the majority language, in agreeing to two languages it is only polarizing people further and giving politicians the clout to create divisions for their own political gains. Giving language portfolio to the same man that says dark days are ahead for Asia is unlikely to lead Sri Lanka anywhere.

 It is unfortunate to see Tamil Nadu isolating itself from the rest of India. When 76million population isolates itself from the Indian nation it is a visible sight. Moreover, the victory has brought a reality check. For the first time, Tamil Nadu is unable to dictate to the Centre. Tamil Nadu is now making goodwill gestures which the Modi camp will reciprocate but not on the basis of blackmail as the Congress was subject to by both Karunanidhi and Jayalalitha. In many ways, the victory has been an anti-climax. Even Prabakaran’s friend Vaiko has lost showing how empty vessels make the most noise!

 Nevertheless, there are greater dangers. Tamil Nadu has always been exercising desires to separate. That dream of separatism was what brought Constitutional amendments to deny secessionism in India and prompted to export the effort to Sri Lanka leaving Tamil Nadu to watch from the balcony. Over the years, numerous other foreign players have entered the equation. Contrary to the Hindu-Buddhist / Tamil-Sinhala sentiment being promoted, Eelam by far is today a Western-backed initiative to which Tamil politicians from both Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu have been coerced into joining for their own political existence and of course the money involved.  

 The dangers of Tamil Nadu voting for a State leader and not going with the rest of the country to vote for the common leader at the centre shows a very clear insular thinking mentality amongst Tamils. It is the same in reading the manner Tamils vote at Sri Lankan elections. On this basis can they argue and maintain the position that they are for peaceful co-existence when by their actions they have shown the contrary.

 By insular the definition implies desire to be different, not wishing to know or learn about other cultures and in looking at the ghettos of Tamils overseas especially in Canada where whole areas are named in Tamil has shown that there is a dislike to integrate. If there is a dislike to integrate where does that leave ‘reconciliation’?

 With BJP introducing new concepts and plans for India’s future what would the response of the Tamil Nadu state be with the current insular thinking that dictates their vote and how will this affect at the Centre given that Tamil Nadu is a geopolitically important state at the apex of a key sea lane and if Hillary Clinton’s direct visit to Jayalalitha is to be taken in context of the West’s looking Asia overall plan it necessitates a very clear set of do’s and don’ts to be read out to the States of India in particular Tamil Nadu. They have acquired the habit of believing that as a State they can carve out separate policies devoid of Centre permission and directly deal with foreign governments, a situation that Sri Lanka’s Northern Provincial Council and its Chief Minister ails from as well.

 With BJP alone having a clear majority, Jayalalitha the queen of Tamil Nadu finds herself without clout at the centre. Modi will be in no mood for the type of tantrums Manmohan had to suffer making a mockery of the power at the Centre. Victory for Jayalalitha has come without the smoke or teeth to threaten the Centre.

The Modi Government and the Sri Lankan Government would need to seriously look at the 13th amendment in the context of Eelam being part of the Western agenda and amicably decide to do away with it in the interests of both nations.

 As for Tamils, it is no better a time to reflect on their insular thinking and resolve to be part and parcel of a nation without aligning with external forces seeking to create scores of regional councils dismantling sovereign governments/nations.

10 Responses to “Lessons for Tamils and India from Tamil Nadu insular voting mentality”

  1. Senevirath Says:



  2. Ananda-USA Says:


    I largely agree with your comments. They are consistent with what I had previously written:

    The AIADMK (led by Jayalalitha) succeeded beyond its wildest dreams in the recent Lok Sabha elections, shutting out all other Tamil parties, and becoming the 3rd largest party in the Lok Sabha, after the BJP and the Congress Party.

    However, the landslide victory of the BJP has eliminated its previous compulsion for coalition partners to form a government, and execute its policies in the Indian parliament. In that sense, the AIADMK has “lost its leverage”, and its ability to blackmail the BJP for strong action against Sri Lanka on Sri Lankan Tamil issues.

    Nevertheless, the BJP is very likely to invite the AIADMK and other minority parties into a coalition, to consolidate its power further and deny those allies to the Congress Party in the opposition, but none of those parties will exercise much power. It is the BJP, and the BJP alone, that will determine Indian Govt policy in the foreseeable future.

    If the GOSL plays its cards right, and establishes a good relationship with Modi, Sri Lanka can benefit greatly, primarily in countering Tamil Nadu forces, the Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora and Western Neocolonialists seeking to undermine Sri Lanka. Modi may be amenable to such overtures from SRi Lanka, because as a Hindu Nationalist curbing separatist regional powers and strengthening the power of the central govt will be among his priorities. We recall that many state governments flouted and undermined national policies and priorities (eg. Tamil parties on Sri Lanka policy, Mamata Banerjee on illegal-immigration agreements with Bangladesh, several States on anti-terrorism policies against Naxalites, etc etc) wihich undermined the writ of the union govt and undermined India’s international standing.

    If the GOSL succeeds in doing that, Sri Lanka will gain some freedom of action for perhaps 5 years until the next Lok Sabha elections, when things could turn completely around.

    Therein lies the danger: If the GOSL thinks any benefit that accrues from the BJP win is permanent, and DOES NOTHING to FREE Sri Lanka from the dangers posed by its global enemies, and by the DOMINATION of our country by India, it will be a great mistake.

    The direction of India’s internal politics will continue to shift wildly like a weather vane; Sri Lanka CANNOT & MUST NOT depend upon it, nor allow Sri Lanka’s integrity and economic progress to be determined by India’s local politics.

    Sri Lanka must go full steam ahead at making itself completely FREE of Indian dominance, treating any restrictions placed by the BJP upon its Tamil enemies at this time as a TEMPORARY BLESSING, until the next wind of political change blows in India in a different direction.

  3. Ananda-USA Says:

    Analyzing the impact of the Lok Sabha election results, I had also previously written:

    From the above data on the Lok SAbha Elections, one fact becomes clear: If the AIADMK does not join the NDA/BJP Governing Coalition, then there will be NO TAMIL PARTY in the governing coalition, and Tamil Nadu will not be able to EXERT ANY PRESSURE on the Government of India to act against Sri Lanka.

    On the other hand, if the AIADMK, led by Jayalalitha, joins the NDA/BJP as a coalition member, then the AIADMK will get AT LEAST ONE Cabinet position in the Governing Coalition. The landslide victory of the NDA/BJP coupled to the declared PREFERENCE of Narendra Modi for a small efficient Cabinet, has weakened the AIADMK’s bargaining position. It will not be able get more than ONE Cabinet position, simply because the NDA/BJP does not need those extra votes in the Lok Sabha to pass ANY legislation.

    My guess is that the AIADMK will make EVERY EFFORT to join the Governing Coalition and will accept ANY DEAL that if offered, and that will spell trouble for Sri Lanka.

    Then, it will all depend on Narenda Modi’s priorities for the next five years. Will he dissipate his energies in struggles against India’s neighbors, or will he de-emphasize those conflicts and focus on what he was elected to do: develop infrastructure, grow India’s economy, and lift his people out of poverty?

    My guess is that Narendra Modi will KEEP HIS ELECTION PROMISES and will stick to what worked well for him in Gujerat. That will be good for Sri Lanka.

    We will know soon enough, but Sri Lanka has to HOPE for the BEST, and PREPARE for the WORST.

  4. Lorenzo Says:

    Many have FAILED to understand the Tamil mentality at elections.

  5. Nanda Says:

    “The Modi Government and the Sri Lankan Government would need to seriously look at the 13th amendment in the context of Eelam being part of the Western agenda and amicably decide to do away with it in the interests of both nations.”

    Why Modi government ? Why can’t our Moda government get rid of 13th amendment and move forward bravely as an independent country rather than wait for Modi to spoon feed us ? If we behave like Moda, Modi will feed us poison.

  6. Ananda-USA Says:

    Yes, INDEED!

    Expel these TRAITORS from the Parliament, and DEPRIVE them of their Civil Rights PERMANENTLY, lest we SPARE the ROD, and SPOIL the SEPARATISTS!

    They knew what they were doing, and are DARING the GOSL to hold them responsible.

    Let us DELIVER the punishment mandated by the LAW OF THE LAND … Now!

    Coalition party of Sri Lankan government urges action against Tamil MPs who commemorated the LTTE

    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    May 20, Colombo: The National Freedom Front (NFF), a coalition party of the Sri Lankan government today urged the government to take action against the legislators of the Tamil party, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) for commemorating the deaths of LTTE cadres last week.

    The media spokesman of the NFF, former MP, Mohamed Muzammil said media had reported that several MPs of the TNA and some members of the TNA-controlled Northern Provincial Council had organized several events to commemorate the dead terrorists at several places including, Mannar, Mullivaikkal, Jaffna and Vavuniya on the 18th May.

    He named the TNA legislators Selvam Adaikkalanathan, Pon Selvarasa, P. Ariyanethran, S. Yoheswaran , Shivasakthi Anandan and the Fisheries Minister of the Northern Provincial Council B. Deniswaran as the chief guests of the events. Several other NPC members have also participated in the commemorative events, the spokesman said.

    Muzammil pointed out that all these legislators have sworn to abide by the Constitution of Sri Lanka when they took oath in accepting their posts.

    Noting that under the Constitution, the legislators have sworn not to assist or support financially or physically, inside or outside the country any act to divide the country or disrupt the ethnic harmony, the spokesman asked whether it is not illegal to publicly commemorate the slain members of a terrorist group.

    “Similarly, shouldn’t they lose their MP posts for involving in acts that violate the Constitution?” Muzammil asked.

    He criticized the government for taking a sleepy attitude towards the Tamil MPs who are involved in anti-Sri Lankan activities and urged the government to take stern action against all the MPs and heads of NGOs who violate the Constitution regardless of their status.

  7. Lorenzo Says:

    NFF has made VERY GOOD 12 point demands to govt. IF govt. is NOT doing them, NFF should LEAVE the govt.

    GR is still very close to NFF. Actually these 12 demands are GR’s.

    Because MR has sidelined GR, he brings these through the NFF.

  8. NAK Says:

    The Tamil mentality in voting no big science,they have no mentality. They are mostly illiterate uneducated peopel who will vote for the best presents they get. Look at how Tamuil Nadu had voted for celluloid hero’s time and time again. The leaders of both DMK ans ADMK are corrupt to the core and they win elections in rotat

  9. NAK Says:

    It is the same with the upcountry Tamils only there are no movie hero’s but union blood suckers. In the north it is the diaspora money that dictates outcome and not real issues.
    Modi has already declared that the LTTE is the military arm of the church and he knows what he is talking about.He won’t be easily misled.

  10. Ananda-USA Says:

    Subramaniam Swamy’s comments on terrorism and the invitation for the President to attend Modi’s inauguration may AUGUR the emergence of a less inimical policy by India towards Sri Lanka.

    Let us HOPE for the BEST, and PREPARE for the WORST.

    Nevertheless, Sri Lanka CANNOT, SHOULD NOT, and MUST NOT ALLOW itself to be HELD HOSTAGE to India’s Internal Politics that swings randomly in the wind like a weather vane … that is NO WAY TO GOVERN A SOVEREIGN NATION!

    Let Sri Lanka ESCAPE from India’s DEADLY EMBRACE COMPLETELY, before it is TOO LATE, because not only Tamil Nadu but also the NeoColonial West is moving to make India a Cat’s Paw against Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka should COMPLETELY ELIMINATE India’s ability to INFLUENCE Sri Lanka.

    India must enter into constructive dialogue with Sri Lanka – Janatha Party leader
    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    May 21, New Delhi: India’s Janatha Party leader Subramanian Swamy has called on the incoming central government to closely cooperate with Sri Lanka to counter terrorism in the region, especially the threat from the Islamic fundamentalists from Pakistan.

    “India must enter into constructive dialogue with Sri Lanka and on counter-terror strategy in the sub-continent particularly in view of the fact that many Pakistani trained Islamic fundamentalists from Sri Lanka are sneaking into India to carry out terrorist attack in Tamil Nadu,” Swamy said in a statement.


    Sri Lankan President invited for Indian PM’s inauguration
    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    May 21, Colombo: Sri Lanka’s President Mahinda Rajapaksa has been invited to attend the inauguration ceremony of the newly elected Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, an official at President’s Office has said.

    Narendra Modi has invited all the heads of SAARC countries – Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka – for his swearing-in ceremony at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on May 26.

    An aide of Sri Lankan President has told Reuters on condition of anonymity that the President would attend the inauguration.

    “The President has got the invitation similar (to) all other South Asian leaders. President Rajapaksa … will participate in the inauguration,” a presidential aide has told Reuters.

    On the 23rd death anniversary of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, who was assassinated by LTTE, Swamy, a strong supporter of Sri Lanka, lauded the Sri Lankan government for completely wiping out the militant group from the island nation, Press Trust of India reported.

    “Today the nation should compliment the Government of Sri Lanka for completely decimating the LTTE and destroying their organization.”

    He also called for counter-terror strategies in the sub-continent against the backdrop of the recent train blasts in in Chennai Railway Station in which one was killed and over a dozen injured.

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