On 25th December of 1968, 44 dalit agricultural labourers were burnt alive in a small hut by upper caste landlords in Keezhvenmani village of Nagappattinam district. Enraged by the agricultural labourers’ political assertion under the red banner with the CPI(M) party, and their refusal to bow to their diktats, landlords led by Congress supporter Gopalakrishna Naidu and his hired goons burnt the Dalits alive. A large number of those killed were women and children.
Observing the 50th anniversary of the Venmani massacre, the Nagappattinam district unit of AIARLA organised a pledge-taking meet at Sirkazhi for which permission was denied by the administration. Defying prohibitary orders, the event was held. Comrade Rajaram Singh, General Secretary of the All India Kisan Mahasabha and CC member of CPIML addressed the gathering.
He saluted the herioc martyrs of Venmani and urged revolutionary activists and workers to defeat the feudal and communal forces of BJP and alike. This would be the fitting tribute to the martyrs of Venmani.
Comrade N Gunasekaran presided over the pledge meet. Comrades Ilangovan, district secretry of the CPIML, SCM T Kannian, Prabhakaran, Veerachelvan, Alagappan of Karaikkal participated. AIARLA state president Balasundaram was also present. The police slapped cases on the organisers for defying the prohibitory order.