Naam Tamilar Katchi

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Naam Tamilar Katchi
FounderS. P. Adithanar
HeadquartersRavanan Kudil,
8, Maruthuvamanai Salai, Senthil Nagar, Porur, Chennai – 600116, Tamil Nadu, India.
Youth wingMuthukumar Youth Wing
Women's wingSenkodi Women's Wing
IdeologyTamil nationalism[1]
Political positionCentre-right[6] [7]
Colours  Red
ECI StatusUnrecognised party[8]
Seats in Lok Sabha
0 / 543
Seats in Rajya Sabha
0 / 245
Seats in Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly
0 / 234
Seats in Puducherry Legislative Assembly
0 / 30
Number of states and union territories in government
0 / 31
Election symbol
Party flag

Naam Tamilar Katchi (transl. We are Tamils Party; NTK) is a Tamil nationalist party in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu.


A serious-looking, mustachioed Seeman
Seeman, the party's chief co-ordinator

In 1958, Indian politician S. P. Adithanar founded the "We Tamils" (நாம் தமிழர் கட்சி) party on the platform of the formation of a sovereign Tamil state. The party advocated for the creation of a homogeneous Greater Tamil Nadu, incorporating Tamil-speaking areas of India and Sri Lanka. The party headquarters was named as "Tamiḻaṉ Illam" (lit. The Home of the Tamilian).

In 1960, the party organised statewide protests in favour of the secession of Madras from India and the establishment of a sovereign Tamil Nadu. Demonstrations included immolation of maps of India (with Tamil Nadu excluded). Adithanar was arrested for organising the protests. The party, along with M. P. Sivagnanam's Tamil Arasu Kazhagam, was also involved in the movement to change the name of the state from Madras State to Tamil Nadu.[9]

Adithanar lost the 1962 election from Tiruchendur[10] and was elected to the Legislative Council in 1964.[11] The WT contested the 1967 election as an ally of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) under the DMK's "Rising Sun" symbol. Four members of the WT were elected to the Assembly, including Adithanar, who won from Srivaikuntam. Later that year, the party merged with the DMK.[12][13][14][15]

On 18 May 2010 in Madurai, a year after the decisive end of the Sri Lankan Civil War, the military subjugation of the Eelam Tamils and the first anniversary of the Naam Tamilar Iyakkam (We Tamils Movement), Seeman formed the Naam Tamilar Katchi party as a revival of S. P. Adithanar's Naam Tamilar (We Tamils) party.[16] Seeman, the NTK's chief co-ordinator, said that the party would be an alternative party to mainstream political parties in Tamil Nadu; Seeman claimed that the establishment of an independent Tamil Eelam would be the moral goal of not just the party, but of all Tamils in Tamil Nadu.[17] During the rally, Seeman stated; "We are not founding the Naam Tamilar party, we are continuing what S. P. Adithanar founded."[18]

Name and emblem[edit]

The party name indicates that "we are Tamils", not labelled by caste or religion.[17] It emphasises Tamil rule of Tamil-majority areas, opposing the Dravidian and Indian parties which have purportedly contributed to the downfall of the Tamils.[19] The NTK flag is similar to the flag of Tamil Eelam; its tiger is also the emblem of the Cholas and the Tamil Tigers. The flag was introduced in Thanjavur, the historic Chola capital.[17]

Party principles[edit]

The declared principles of the Naam Tamil Party are as follows:[20]

1) The revival of Tamils is the goal of us Tamils!

2) The only solution to the Eelam Tamil issue is the establishment of a separate Tamil Eelam state. Our ideal is to fight for the establishment of Tamil Eelam!

3) Autonomy for all states is the birthright of national races! We will fight for a constitutional amendment for a federal union of sovereign republics.

4) Let Tamil live everywhere! Let's rule Tamil forever!

5) We will transition the current cooperative system into a people's cooperative to pave the way for an equitable path.

6) We will reform land to ensure that the landless forty percent get either a house or land!

7) We will develop scientific discoveries suitable for nature that are beneficial to the majority and promote technical education!

8) We will unite all global Tamils and fight to secure Tamil rights!

9) We will establish a common Tamil government and eliminate economic disparities!

10) We will eliminate caste-based exploitation and reorganise the traditional varna system!

11) We will eradicate caste and religious dominance! We will pave the way to live equally! Let's unite beyond caste and religious differences and conquer governance for Tamils!

12) Providing equal opportunities for women is not charity – it is their birthright! We will strive for it!

13) Tamil everywhere, in everything! We will learn and teach in Tamil!

14) In all sectors, Tamil should be the language of administration, speech, and worship! Employment in Tamil Nadu should be guaranteed to those educated in Tamil medium!

15) We will prevent cultural degradation through appropriate cultural revolutions in media arts!

16) Tomorrow's Tamil governance will not favor any religion, and the government will not interfere in anyone's personal religious beliefs!

17) Justice administration without political interference! All administrations will be free from bribery and corruption.

18) We will create a self-sufficient economic plan through men's and women's self-help groups to meet basic needs!

19) We will fight to decentralise power and wealth! We will structure them like a pyramid.

20) We will prevent private looting of profits! We will eliminate the black market for money!

21) We will remove the distinction between organised and unorganised labourers and establish the right to live!

22) We will make healthcare a basic right! We will ensure all medical facilities are accessible to the grassroots level!

23) We will ensure rights and protection for Tamils living in other states through the establishment of National Ethnic Friendship Associations in every state!

24) We will enhance cultural tourism and unify global Tamils!

25) People's courts to investigate all malpractices! We will create laws to critique court decisions!

26) We will prioritise Tamil martial arts such as Silambam and Kalaripayattu!


Water sharing and sand mining[edit]

The party has launched several demonstrations demanding Tamil Nadu's share of Kaveri River and Mullaperiyar Dam water from upstream states.[21][22] Seeman has criticised political apathy on this issue and the illegal sand mining of the state's riverbeds.[23][24]

NLC privatisation[edit]

Between 2011 and 2012, when Tamil Nadu was in the midst of a power crisis which led to exorbitant tariffs and industrial failure,[25] the management of Neyveli Lignite Corporation (a government-owned company in Neyveli) considered selling stock to private investors. This sparked unrest in the state, and NLC employees organised a strike against the central government's decision. The corporation was accused of manipulating its workers and attempting to cover up the issue.[26][27]

Naam Tamilar Katchi opposed the decision, with Seeman saying that the Tamil strikers were experiencing discrimination from non-Tamil management. He also criticised the NLC for investing in other Indian states during an acute power shortage in Tamil Nadu.[26][28]

Law and order[edit]

Seeman cited a deterioration in law and order in the state during the Congress-DMK alliance.[29] Denying NTK involvement in an assault on a group of Sri Lankan tourists in Chennai, he said that the party abhors violence in any form and cadres who violate its principles of conduct would be punished.[30]


Naam Tamilar Katchi has highlighted the plight of Sri Lankan Tamils who seek refuge in India, and their persecution by the state and central governments.[31]

Abolition of the death penalty[edit]

NTK has supported commuting the death sentences and releasing those convicted in the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. Seeman has said that the party's stance was not limited to the three Tamils condemned to death, but for the complete abolition of the death penalty in India.[32] Naam Tamilar Katchi has also called for the humanitarian release of prisoners jailed for more than 10 years. The party supported the closure of Sri Lankan Tamil refugee camps in Tamil Nadu, in which inmates were reportedly tortured.[33]

Retrieval of Katchatheevu[edit]

Seeman insists that Katchatheevu is an Indian island, and claims it was illegal to cede the island to Sri Lanka. Seeman threatened to reclaim Kachatheevu by arming fishermen, which resulted in sedition charges.[34][35]

Tamil rule in Tamil Nadu[edit]

Seeman said that the chief minister of Tamil Nadu should be a Tamil.[36] According to a party slogan, everyone has right to live in Tamil Nadu but only a Tamil has the right to govern the state as chief minister.[37] Seeman's statement was criticised as racist, and he was accused of identity politics and creating ethnic divisions.[38] Tamil media asked, "Who is a Tamil? How do you define a Tamil?"[39][40][41] His statement had a mixed reaction from Tamil nationalists.[42][43][44]

Proposed Chennai–Salem Expressway[edit]

Naam Tamilar Katchi is against the proposed Chennai-Salem Expressway project. According to the party, the project would be a disaster for the region's fragile ecology and would enable mining companies to illegally mine valuable minerals in the Kalrayan and Servarayan Hills (on the expressway's proposed path). Seeman and his cadres, protesting the project's implementation, were arrested on 18 July, 2018.[45] The party also filed a writ petition in the Madras High Court, and the court quashed the government order to acquire land for the project.[46]


2011 Tamil Nadu Assembly election[edit]

The NTK spearheaded a campaign against the Indian National Congress in the 2011 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election for their alleged role in the genocide of Tamils in Sri Lanka and other anti-Tamil policies.[47][48]

2016 Tamil Nadu Assembly election[edit]

Naam Tamilar Katchi contested in all 234 constituencies in Tamil Nadu and the districts of Puducherry and Karaikal.[49] On 12 February 2016, all 234 NTK candidates were introduced in Cuddalore by Seeman. The party promotes equal rights, and has included candidates with disabilities. It is the first party in the history of Tamil Nadu with a transgender candidate. The Election Commission of India authorised twin candles as the party's symbol.[50]

Seeman told a CPM member that his party would receive more votes than the CPM's PWF alliance in the 2016 state assembly elections, or he would dissolve his party and join the CPM.[51] The NTK received fewer votes than the alliance, and fewer than NOTA.[52] The NTK lost everywhere; Seeman finished in fifth place in Cuddalore, and lost his deposit.[53] Asked by reporters about his challenge, Seeman said that he challenged the Communists (not the Vijayakanth-PWF alliance); his party received more votes than every single party in the PWF alliance, winning the challenge.[54] The NTK received 458,104 votes (1.1 percent) in the 2016 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election, more than older parties such as MDMK, CPI, VCK, CPM and TMC.[55]

2017 R. K. Nagar by-election[edit]

The NTK fielded K. Kalaikottudhayam as its candidate for the 2017 R. K. Nagar by-election.[56] According to Seeman, voters in Tamil Nadu pay more attention to party symbols than to the candidates. He said that the election commission should replace party symbols with candidate numbers or give every election new party symbols.[57] Seeman criticised the commission for not attempting to halt the bribery of voters in the constituency, asking about the location of promised CCTV cameras.[58] Tamil news channel Puthiya Thalaimurai TV surveyed the constituency on which participating party was an alternative to DMK and AIADMK. The results were: NTK 11.72%, BJP 8.99%, DMDK 8.54%, CPI 5.45%, and no one 62.67%.[59][60] The by-election was not held as planned on April 12, because the election rules were violated by bribery and corruption.[61] Seeman expressed his dissatisfaction with democracy in India, saying that it was unfair of the Election Commission to stop the elections, rather than disqualifying the parties involved in bribery.[62] The R. K. Nagar by-election was held on 21 December 2017, despite voter-bribery allegations. T. T. V. Dhinakaran reportedly gave voters about ₹10,000 per vote; AIADMK gave ₹5,000, and DMK ₹2,000.[63] Independent candidate T. T. V. Dhinakaran won the election, and AIADMK and DMK took second and third place. NTK finished fourth, with 3,802 votes.

2019 Indian general election[edit]

Naam Tamilar Katchi contested all 39 Tamil Nadu constituencies and Puducherry.[64] NTK was the first party to field 20 women in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections for the total of 40 seats (39 in Tamil Nadu and one in Puducherry).[65][66]

The NTK received 84,855 votes for H. Mahendran in the Sriperumbudur constituency, the party's highest vote count in the 2019 Lok Sabha election.[67] V. Jainteen received 17,069 votes in the Kanyakumari constituency, the party's lowest vote count in the state.[68] NTK received a total of 1,645,185 votes,[69] 3.909 percent of the 42,083,544 votes cast in the state.[70]

2021 Tamil Nadu Assembly election[edit]

Naam Tamilar Katchi contested all 234 assembly constituencies in Tamil Nadu and 28 in Puducherry. The party again fielded equal numbers of male and female candidates (117 women and 117 men in Tamil Nadu). On 7 March 2021, Seeman introduced his party's candidates at a meeting in Chennai.[71] Seeman would contest the Thiruvottiyur constituency, although he said earlier that he would contest the Kolathur constituency against DMK leader M. K. Stalin.

Electoral performance[edit]

Vote share in Tamil Nadu Lok Sabha elections
Tamil Nadu Lok Sabha elections
Year Party leader Seats contested Seats won Change Percentage of votes Vote swing Popular vote Result
2019 Seeman 38
0 / 39
Steady 3.91% Steady 1,668,079 Lost
Vote share in Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly elections
Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly elections
Year Party leader Seats contested Seats won Change Percentage of votes Vote swing Popular vote Result
2016 Seeman 234
0 / 234
Steady 1.06% Steady 458,007 Lost
2021 Seeman 234
0 / 234
Steady 6.89% Increase 5.83% 3,067,458 Lost
Vote share in Puducherry Lok Sabha elections
Puducherry Lok Sabha elections
Year Party leader Seats contested Seats won Change Percentage of votes Vote swing Popular vote Result
2019 Seeman 1
0 / 1
Steady 2.89% Steady 22,857 Lost
Vote share in Puducherry Legislative Assembly elections
Puducherry Legislative Assembly elections
Year Party leader Seats contested Seats won Change Percentage of votes Vote swing Popular vote Result
2016 Seeman 26
0 / 26
Steady 0.47% Steady 3,888 Lost
2021 Seeman 28
0 / 28
Steady 3.37% Increase 2.9% 28,189 Lost

See also[edit]


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