News: The Prime Minister has recalled the rich contributions of Pasumpon Muthuramalinga Thevar on Thevar Jayanthi.
Muthuramalinga Thevar (1908-1963)
- Muthuramalingam was a politician and a patriarch of Thevar community in the state of Tamil Nadu.
- He was elected three times to the national Parliamentary Constituency.
- Thevar attended the 52nd annual session of the Indian National Congress, held in Tripuri in March 1939. At this meeting the presidency of Subhas Chandra Bose was challenged by Pattabhi Sitaramayya. Sitaramayya had the active support of Gandhi. Bose was elected president again over Gandhi’s preferred candidate Pattabhi Sitaramayya. Thevar strongly supported Bose in the intra-Congress dispute and joined the Forward Bloc.
- Criminal Tribes Act (CTA) had been enacted in 1920 by the government of the Madras Presidency and was subsequently implemented in a piecemeal fashion.
- CTA criminalized entire communities by designating them as habitual criminals.
- Adult males of the groups were forced to report weekly to local police, and had restrictions on their movement imposed. Thevar mobilised resistance to it, touring villages in the affected areas and leading protest rallies for the rights of the individuals registered under it.
- The Temple Entry Authorisation and Indemnity Act was passed by the government of C. Rajagopalachari in 1939. This removed restrictions prohibiting Dalits from entering Hindu temples. Thevar supported this reform and on 8 July 1939 he helped the activist A. Vaidyanatha Iyer take Dalits to Meenakshi Temple in Madurai.