P Chidambaram always ends his Budget speech by quoting from Thiruvalluvar which has a couplet for every subject ranging from ploughing a piece of land to ruling a country, and followed the tradition this year as well.
"Kalangathu Kanda Vinaikkan Thulangkathu Thookkang Kadinthu Seyal"
which says,"What clearly eye discerns as right, with steadfast will and mind unslumbering, that should man fulfil."
Who was Thiruvalluvar?
Saint Thiruvalluvar was a great Tamil poet who lived 2000 years ago. He is best known for his work on ethics, called Thirukurral which is very well known and introduced the policies for good governance almost 2000 years back.
The finance minister doesn't fail to quote his works on any occasion. Truly, he is a great admirer of his works.
Let's take you back to all the occassions in which the work of Thiruvalluvar has come into light in the sessions addressed by P Chidambaram.
In the year 2008-09, he mentioned that he often turns to Thiruvalluvar for for guidance and reassurance. He quoted that the folowing words will guide the UPA government in the right direction,"Kodai Ali Sengol Kudi Ombal Nangum Udaiyanam Vendharkku Oli" which means that 'generous grants, compassion, righteous rule and succour to the downtrodden are the hallmarks of good governance.'
Then in the year 2007-08, he spoke about agriculture in the last 15 minutes of his speech and said that there is no dearth of schemes or funds in the sector.
He further continued to say that "Saint Thiruvalluvar watches over us and warns us" and then resorted to the the Tamil quote, "Uzhavinar Kai Madangin Illai Vizhaivathoom Vittame Enbarkum Nilai"
In short what he conveyed to the speaker and other members present in the session is that, 'If ploughmen keep their hands folded even sages claiming renunciation cannot find salvation.'
In the year 2005-06, P Chidambaram mentioned the 'ornaments of a polity' right from the works of this great poet,namely, health, wealth, produce, happiness and security.
"Aran Izhukkathu Allavai Neeki Maran IzhukkaMaanam Udayathu Arasu."
This line was spoken by P Chidambaram in 2004-2005, emphasising on the ethics of a good ruler. He said that a good ruler is one who observe ethics, commit no crime and walk the path of honour and courage.
P Chidambaram refers to the ethical work—Thirukurral to guide him and be his muse for every situation possible.
Thirukural was last quoted in the Budget speech in 2008 as Chidambaram presented his Budget.
Twitter was abuzz with reactions to Chidambaram quoting Thirukural in his Budget presentation today. Here are a few reactions:
Thiruvalluvar would have chosen a different occupation if he knew an idiot like Chidambaram was going to quote him all the time.
— pr4D33p 4N4N7h (@wabbster) February 28, 2013
Came in on time to see the closing of the Budget. Liked the Thiruvalluvar quote.
— Katherine Abraham (@katie_abraham) February 28, 2013
PC recites a poem in Tamil..Thiruvalluvar.. for a lot of MPs the budget presentation perhaps sounded just as alien as the poem...
— Pooja Prasanna (@PoojaPrasanna4) February 28, 2013
— GanapathyI (@GanapathyI) February 28, 2013