The State Government signed a memorandum of understanding with the Japan Tamil Sangam and Overseas Tamil Indians Association in Japan…writes S.Ravi
Language is an important tool to reach out to the diaspora. Doing that precisely is the Tamil Nadu Government as is evident in the ongoing overseas visit to Japan by M.K. Stalin, the Chief Minister of the State.
Reaching out to the Tamilians in Japan to spread and preserve the language, the State Government signed a memorandum of understanding with the Japan Tamil Sangam and Overseas Tamil Indians Association in Japan.
Signed in the presence of the CM it will enable Tamil children living in Japan to learn their mother tongue through Tamil Virtual Academy. Stalin was attending a reception held in his honour in Tokyo by non-resident Tamils living in Japan.
The reception was a grand affair as children of non-resident Tamils performed several traditional art forms. These included mayilattam, silambattam, thappattam and kummi attam.
At the gathering Stalin observed that linguists have said that there were many similarities in the grammar of Tamil and Japanese. He talked about how the Tamils and Japanese liked to learn each other’s language and Susumu Ono, a linguistic scholar, who had studied the link between the two languages for over three decades, had established similarities in the two.
Stalin said: “Even on a sabbatical, my agenda, which was full of government programs and political programs, was a bit of a change – a welcome program for the Japan Tamil Associations. Hearts melted when the children presented artistic performances that showcased Tamil culture.”
“The similarity between the Japanese language and Tamil is the basis for the blossoming of harmony between the people living there.”
He added: “I called upon the Tamil community which has branched out in Japan to find its roots in mother earth. The underground museum is waiting for them to know the antiquity of our history; Borunai Museum is also developing with renewed vigor.”
Continuing in the same vein, Stalin said there was likeness between Pongal and the Japanese harvest festival. He went on to add that Iravatham Mahadevan, a Tamil scholar during his visit to Japan had found that Japanese letters and Tamil Brahmi letters were identical and even the meaning of such words were same.