CHENNAI: The International Movement for Tamil Culture (IMTC), Indian chapter, has launched a drive to mobilise participants for the Ninth World Tamil Conference, which is scheduled to be held in Kuala Lumpur between January 29 and February 1, 2015, two decades after its previous edition held in Thanjavur.
Organised by the International Academy of Tamil Research (IATR) at the University of Malaya, the conference will be primarily a seminar on Tamil Studies. Unlike the earlier conferences held in Tamil Nadu - Thanjavur (1995), Madurai (1981) and Chennai (1968) - or the Classical Tamil Conference at Coimbatore in 2010, the meet will have only academic sessions.
However, the IMTC, which is the coordinating organisation in Tamil Nadu, wants a large contingent of delegates from the State to attend the event. Calling upon the people to travel to Kuala Lumpur and ‘unite in the name of Tamils’, senior advocate R Gandhi, who is also the president of the coordinating committee in Tamil Nadu, also wanted scholars from Tamil Nadu to present papers.
Addressing a press conference to provide details of the conference, particularly since the arrangements for the conference had been in low key with little awareness about it outside the Tamil academic arena, Gandhi said that Tamil Nadu has the largest concentration of Tamil people in the world and hence it was essential that the representation from the State was substantial.
Noted Tamil scholar and advisor for the committee, Avai Natarajan, traced the history of the Tamil conferences since 1966 and explained how all events held overseas were purely academic, while the conclaves in the State had sessions and events for the common people, too.