Blackshirts (India)

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Blackshirts are members of the anti-religious, atheist quasi-political organization Dravidar Kazhagam in Tamil Nadu, founded by "Periyar" E V Ramasamy. The members wear black shirts to mock and protest the saffron vestments of Hindu religious leaders and sadhus as black is generally associated with death and bad-luck in contrast with saffron's auspicious association. This has its origins in the banning of black flags as a protest tool in Tamil Nadu. To circumvent this ban, members wore black shirts. Black shirts and black flags were also seen as a symbol of anarchy in southern India especially in Tamil Nadu during the early 20th century.

References

  • Revenue officials launch `black-shirt' agitation
  • Karunanidhi leads black shirt agitation
  • Changing Mores of the Dravidian Movement
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