Ilavarasan weds Divya – A Slap across the Face of Tamil Nadu

One of the worst and shameful incidents has unfolded in Tamil Nadu in the past 8 months starting November 2012. It all started when a boy from a LOWER caste married a girl from a HIGHER caste. The location where this happened was Dharmapuri, one of Tamil Nadu’s northern states known well for caste based violence. By violence, I mean ripping out intestines, poking out eyes, roasting flesh and what not. And all this are done to a fellow human and not to some animal. Yes, violence that can tear apart a human body and with it, a family.

  The boy and the girl loved each other. It was most probably an honest love that grew between those 2 hearts. The brave girl, decided that the love was more important than the caste that separated them. In places like Dharmapuri and few other ‘illiterate’ ‘uncivilized’ districts in Tamil Nadu, even to speak to a member of the LOWER caste was a crime and the person involved is subjected to severe and gruesome punishment. Despite knowing all this, the couple decided to end up marrying and got married. That is all they did. Nothing sinful, but just marry each other.

The father of the girl as soon as he heard that his daughter had married a boy from the gutters of the society, killed himself out of shame. The death of a person from a HIGHER caste because of a person from a LOWER caste, unleashed a hell. The entire town where the LOWER caste boy lived burned. Because they were LOWER in society, mostly the place was filled with huts made of dried palm leaves. The fire destroyed most of the town including houses and shops. Those who perpetrated this crime rejoiced at the death of each life. Apparently, the HIGHER caste animals had a political representation for them in the form of a failed political party. The party that is named after the name of the HIGHER caste provoked and instigated the violence further by giving blood enraging speech about how important caste is and how it is a crime to love another person from another caste. The mad leader and the equally idiotic followers did the mad act and allowed for the town to burn.
What followed next was a series of cinematic events that cascaded to the death of the boy ‘Ilavarasan’ today (04.07.2013). He killed himself by falling before a speeding train in Dharmapuri.

A case was filed in the Madras High Court demanding the nullification of the marriage because it was not legal and also sighting the fact that the boy mesmerized the girl unlawfully and married her for monetary gains. Though the couple argued that they were married for love and they loved each other, the case proceeded blindly. During the second hearing, the girl Divya said she is not going to leave her husband. During the third hearing, knowing not what changed her mind, she said she was going with her mum leaving Ilavarasan. In a press interview, she said she was ready to get back to Ilavarasan if her mother accepted him and the marriage. And finally in another hearing, Divya declared that she was never going to live with Ilavarasan again because she was hurt her father died because of her and also she was hurt that a violence broke out because of the marriage.
Ilavarasan who loved her truly was not able to bear her departure and made up his mind and fell in front of a train.

So…. Loss of 2 lives and several properties. All this happened because two people loved each other. Dreamed of a beautiful life together. All they got was nothing but tragedy that will haunt them for their lives. Who knows? Will this suicide rampage stop with the 2 men?

What has this caste brought the people? If you can think, there is not one good thing. But still blind ignorant people stick on to their castes valuing it more than their lives and are mentally so scared that they are ready to destroy other’s lives.

In a secular democracy like India, it is surprising we do not have a legislation to prohibit the formation of political parties based on religion and caste. When parties are allowed to form based on caste and religion, the whole concept of secularism is thrown into the trash.

The anger in me can never be said in words. My anger towards those who provoked and allowed the violence to take place. My anger towards those who didn’t do anything to prevent the violence. My anger on those people in Dharmapuri who are such fools. My anger on the girl Divya for bending down finally to the social evil which resulted in the death of her dad and Ilavarasan. My anger on Ilavarasan for killing himself. 

This incident is nothing but a hard slap across the face of Tamil Nadu which is considered as one of the most peaceful states in India. Though the government did some arrests here and there, there was no repaying of the lives of those 2 men.
It is the responsibility of the parents to teach their children… Sorry, to prevent their children from knowing anything about caste. I still don’t understand why we need community certificates and reservations. Those are completely a vote bank based schemes. Though it serves good for a few people, ultimately it is a parasite that sucks out efficiency and productivity from any country’s economy that follows reservation and caste based politics. Slowly and very slowly as education spreads and enlightens the minds of several oblivious citizens, such incidents will have to be tolerated with a heavy heart. No matter what kind of government comes and goes, unless people are the change, change can never happen.

For those of you who haven’t seen the movie “Vetham Puthithu” by Barathiraja, kindly watch it whenever time permits. It clearly shows how crude and painful caste and its atrocities can be. As said in that movie, the youth of India must come out of the caste & religion chains that binds them and evolve to be free thinkers and ultimately a civilized citizen.

PS: update in June 2018 - my views on reservation has radically changed in the past few years and I now believe that reservation based on caste was an attempt to overcome the prevailing inequality that was created because of caste in the first place. Having said that, it is very important that populations eliminate the idea of caste from their thought process and avoid attaching it with their identities. Why association of caste to a personal identity will inevitably result in detrimental effects on societal well being. 

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