90th anniversary of Malabar Revolt observed

Malappuram: The 90th anniversary of the Malabar Revolt of 1921 was observed at the Ali Musliyar Nagar in Tirurangadi. The three-day programme ended yesterday at the PSMO College.
The people of Malabar can be proud that the tactics used by Kunjali Marakkar in the wars of yore are still followed by the Indian army, said Dr KKN Kurup, famous historian and former VC of the Calicut University. He was delivering the chief address on the topic ‘in memory of the Khilafat leaders’.

Gate at Pookkottur to commemorate the famous battle
 Panakkad Sadiqali Shihab Thangal inaugurated the valedictory function in memory of the Khilafat leaders. Dr EK Ahmed Kutty, Dr Husain Randathani, N Abdulla Musliyar Cherur, SM Muhammed Koya and Dr Vasu Thilleri spoke. Abdussamad Samadani presided over the session in which CH Musa Master welcomed and Prof P Mahmud delivered the vote of thanks. A Mappila Kalamela was held afterwards in which Firose Babu and Faisal Elettil led a song fest.

The three-day programme was inaugurated by Central Minister of State for Home Affairs Mullappally Ramachandran on Saturday. He said that the Malabar Revolt was freedom struggle and not just a Mappila rebellion. People took part in the revolt with nationalistic and secular spirit. Muslims were brutally tortured in the revolt and so they gave everything for it. He added that a serious research and factual investigation should be conducted about the Revolt.

A hall in memory of the martyrs of the Malabar Revolt was inaugurated on Sunday by Kerala Assembly Speaker K Radhakrishnan at the Tirurangadi Young Men’s Library. Mr Radhakrishnan said that the fighters of the Malabar Revolt gave their lives for the freedom of the country. It is the same freedom that the feudalism of that time and the imperialism of the present time are trying to destroy, he added. Muslim League general secretary PK Kunhalikkutty inaugurated the family get-together of the Malabar revolutionaries and the history seminar. ET Muhammed Basheer, MP, distributed the mementos for the families of the revolutionaries. Central Minister of State for External Affairs E Ahmed inaugurated the seminar on ‘Mappilas and the multi-cultural society in Kerala’ in which journalist CP Saidalavi delivered the chief address. Dr KN Ganesh, Dr Mustafa Kamal Pasha, AK Mustafa, Prof P Mammed and CP Abdurahman Kutty spoke among others.

The EMS Study and Research Centre had organized a ‘history development seminar’ as part of the 90th anniversary observations of the Malabar Revolt on February 18 at Tanur. Similar programmes were reportedly held at Vailathur and Niramaruthur on February 20 and 21.

The Malabar Revolt took place in Malabar, especially in the Ernad and Valluvanad talukas, in 1921. It was a culmination of the peasant uprisings in the region for about a century against the landlords and the British authorities. The Mappila Outrageous Act used to torture the Mappilas (Muslims of Malabar) also led to the unending hatred towards the government-landlord nexus. The Revolt of 1921 took place when the peasants, mainly Mappila Muslims and low caste Hindus, got a public venue of the Khilafat – Non Cooperation Movement of the Congress led by Mahatma Gandhi and the Ali Brothers. There were battles at different places such as Pookkottur, Tirurangadi, Malappuram, Manjeri, Perinthalmanna, Pandikkad and Tirur etc from August 1921 onwards. Historic facts say that the British rule was absent in several places of Malabar for about six months after which the revolt was crushed with the help of Gurkha regiments from north India. The leaders of the rebellion such as Ali Musliyar and Variyankunnath Kunjahammed Haji were executed. Those who participated in the revolt were jailed, exiled to the Andamans or executed. Though the revolt was mainly against the British government, the fighters also attacked and looted money of the landlords and those who helped the British, who were mainly upper caste Hindus. This has led to some historians terming it as a Mappila Rebellion against Hindus, though major historians disagree.

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