Tamils - a Trans State Nation
Myanmar (Burma) -
Myanmar: A Neglected Area of Tamil Lexicography by Gregory James;
Government & Burmese Tamils - Thanjai Nalankilli]
From Tamil Studies Abroad, A Symposium edited by Xavier
published by the International Association of Tamil Research, 1968:
"A report dated March 1966 from Burma states:
Tamil population 200,000
Telegu population 50,000
Malayalee population 5,000
About 50 primary schools are conducted by Tamils. The Rasika Ranjani and
Thondan, two Tamil dailies have been banned since January 1966. There are over 40 Hindu
temples founded and administered by Tamils in Burma, and two Tamil Catholic parishes. The
Nattukkotai Chettiars administer Thendayuthapani temples in 32 towns."
The report also states: " Our Tamilians along with other Indians are
leaving Burma for good. Therefore our schools are being closed one by one. Most of our
temples are functioning with the few people who have remained."
|From: Ananthan @ siva.for.uidaho.edu on:
Fri Aug 23 03:24:50
I have met a few Tamils from Myanmar. Due to the close door policy,
Myanmar is like in the 50s and 60s. However, food is plentiful and
There are many South Indian Temples all over Rangoon or Yangoon, but
like all buidings they are not well maintained.
One of the reason the Burmese govt nationalised banks businesses in
the 60s was the practical grip the Chettiar Tamils had over the
agricultural sector. Some say due the heavy debt by Burmese farmers
the Chettiars, many of them not residents of Burma, owned
practically all the rice fields. In a way you cannot blame the
Burmese, since the Indians went there to make an inch but due to
their over enterprising nature took a yard and at the end some got
beaten by the Brmese foot. Probably the same thing happen to fiji
Indians and the Indians in Uganda...I don't know.
Even today South Indian restaurants in Burma (there are many still
operating) are called Chetty Restaurants. However. the older
generation still resent the Indians/Tamils. Infact Burma is probably
the only place in the world where Tamil writings and language is a
kind of banned!
The remaining Tamils some say around 500,000 have adapted
themselves, embraced Buddhist ways in addition to Hinduism, speak
Burmese and dress in Burmese style. I guess Indians are also needed
to adopt Burmese names, just like the Chinese in Indonesia. Anyway,
without any compulsion, the Chinese and Indians in Thailand have
adopted Thai names and language.