(The PM’s support – PART ONE)
MADURAI: Prime Minister Mr.Narendra Damodardas Modi’s amazing Connect with the People can be a good subject for deep research studies by scholars. His mastery over instant understanding of needs of the people and wants of various communities makes him the most sought after.
One of the best examples of Mr.Modi’s commitment to a community is his deep understanding about the just demand of DEVENDRA KULA VELALAR community people in Tamil Nadu who have been pleading to integrate  their SEVEN sub-castes into ONE. They want the Tamil Nadu State government to take appropriate steps for this and have been waiting for G.O.
Mr.Narendra Modi’s speech in Madurai public meeting on January 27th 2019 has built lot of confidence and gave high hopes that ‘Narendra will standby the Devendrars’ to fulfill their demand since they knew Modi is their great hope and and as a PM who spent time with them to know the background of their appeals right in his residence in New Delhi. 
Mr.M.Thangaraj, founder-president, Devendrar Thannaarva Arakkattalai and BJP State Secretary Prof.Dr.R.Srinivasan, have narrated the sequence of initiatives taken in the last few years for Devendra Kula Velalar community and how Prime Minister Modi and BJP national president Mr.Amit Shah stood by them.
1. In 2011, Mr.Thangaraj gave a petition to the then Chief Minister and his plead was to integrate 7 sub-castes of Devendrar community. They are Pallar, Pannadi, Kudumbar, Vathiriar, Kaladi, Kadaiyan and Devendra Kulathan. On 27th January 2011, then CM announced (Retd) Justice Janardhanan Commission to look into the matter. There was no progress and in subsequent days, Mr.Thangaraj came close to the BJP.
2. Tamil Nadu BJP had passed a resolution in 2012 at its ‘Thaamarai Sangamam conference’ endorsing the Devendra Kula Velalar community’s demand for integrating seven sub-castes and supported the merger.
3. On 6th August 2015, BJP national president Mr.Amit Shah took part in the Devendra Kula Velalar conference in Madurai. He was the FIRST SIGNATORY of the MADURAI DECLARATION, which is seen as a major milestone for the community. Support from all sections was garnered.
4. Later, Prime Minister Mr.Narendra Modi invited select group of 100 delegates from Devendra Kula Velalar community to his residence in New Delhi and hosted a dinner to them on September 16th 2015. He got all the particulars about their demand and assured his solidarity in getting their dream fulfilled. 
5. Mr.Modi just did not stop at that. “I AM NARENDRA, YOU ARE DEVENDRA”, he quipped and this had boosted the morale of Devendrars. After that, many procedural developments took place, studies took place from anthropological perspective. However, the State government’s speed to pursue their matter swiftly was found wanting.
6. Prime Minister Modi’s speech at Madurai public meeting on January 27th 2019, in which he specially mentioned about Devendra Kula Velalar community demand from Tamil Nadu, was a booster of sorts. Immediately, this community people jot jubilant and thanked Mr.Modi through posters, social media and what not. Feelgood factor was generated after PM’s recent Madurai visit and his assertive statement of solidarity to find quick solution for their seven year wait.
7. Madurai became an important turning point for Devendra Kula Velalars since it was here Mr.Amit Shah signed the “MADURAI PRAKATANAM” (Madurai Declaration) for them and now Mr.Modi took it further with his assurance / announcement through MADURAI UCCHADAM).
8. The demand of Devendra Kula Velalar is justified and deserving because the sub-castes get different caste certificates. Also, the mention of Pallar is derogatory / stigma attached. Their feelings and sentiments were hurt.
9. The National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC), New Delhi, took up their representation and is following it up with Tamil Nadu government. It had asked for action taken report.
10. Devendra Kula Velalar community people are spread over 23 districts and concentrated more in southern districts / eastern part of the State. Since the PM spoke about their plea from a public platform in Madurai on January 27th 2019, it instilled confidence that a solution is in sight.  
With Mr.Modi and Mr.Amit Shah on their side, with the BJP State unit pursuing their matter with the Tamil Nadu government, with party leaders like Prof.Dr.R.Srinivasan and others from Madurai providing academic inputs and reports to authorities and with community leader Mr.M.Thangaraj’s relentless efforts, the Devendra Kula Velalars are certain that steps will be taken soon to integrate the seven sub-castes of their community. It is a seven year wait for them till now, Feb 9th 2019.

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