Mahakavi Subramanya Bharathi's (Dec 11, 1882 - Sep 11, 1921) 128th birthday was celebrated on 11th December 2009 by his admirers. Bharathi is considered as one of the National poets, for his exemplary contribution to the freedom movement. Around 1906, he was writing poems which kindled the freedom thoughts of the people. Then British Government banned his poems and he moved to Pondicherry, then French Territory to avoid being arrested. Later in 1918, he was arrested by British and he was put in prison. Because of his prison life, his health got deteriorated and finally he passed away at is 39th age.
Even 30 to 40 years prior to the Indian Independence, he visualised Free India and wrote poems accordingly. Sadly, at the time of cremation after his death, only 14 people accompanied him in his last journey. People started realising his greateness only after his death. The State Government has now acquired the house at Triplicane, where he lived and converted into a memorial. The Government will complete its duty by garlanding his statue at Marina Beach by one of the Ministers on his birthday.
Even at Chennai, many did not remember him on his 128th birthday. Only few of the admireres of Bharathi organised some small small events. Nallore Vattam (Kodambakkam 2020), a partner organisation of Action 2020 Team organised a procession and a meeting on 11th December. Around 100 people, including children participated and remembered him. Action 2020 congratulates Mr Murugan and Mr Prabhakar who took the initiative in remembering the great National Poet.
Every year, Nallore Vattam celebrates the birth anniversary of this great Poet. While they were preparing for the celebrations, some people enquired them whether they were preparing to celebrate the birth day of Rajanikanth (film actor) which fell on the next day or that of the film director Bharati. The youngmen who were organising this event, were all taken by suprise whether that was the treatment given to a person who gave his life for the Nation.
It is sad that the people have forgotten the 'real hero' and remember only the 'screen hero'