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Post at: Sep 16 2021

Vanniyar Movement

Why in News

  • In September 2021, the DMK government in Tamil Nadu has announced the construction of a memorial in Villupuram to honour people killed in police firing and clashes in 1987.

Key Highlights

  • Vanniyars are one of the largest and most consolidated backward communities in the state.
  • They had raised massive protests in the mid-1980s demanding 20% reservation in the state, and 2% in central services.
  • Their movement was backed by the Justice Party as well as the Self-Respect Movement.


  • Organised protests began with the formation of Vanniyar Sangam, headed by Ramadoss.
  • The agitation began in 1986. The peak was in September 1987, when road traffic in northern Tamil Nadu came to a halt for an entire week.
  • The Vanniyars declared an agitation from September 17 to 23, 1987.
  • Many people were killed in clashes.
  • After the DMK government came to power in 1989, reservation was granted to Vanniyars (in most backward castes).
  • With local body polls round the corner, the DMK government announced to construct a memorial in Villupuram to honour people killed during the movement demanding reservation for the Vanniyar Community.

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