The identity of any minority ethnic group is of paramount importance and it is totally unfair when its entity is eclipsed.
There was a time in Mauritian history when the population was distinguished by two categories, namely the General Population and the Indian Population. After Mauritius achieved its independence in 1968, its constitution recognised four religious groups such as Hindus, Muslims, Sino-Mauritians and the General Population. The Muslims became a separate identity whereas the other three minority groups, namely the Tamils, the Marathi and the Telugus remained embedded within the Hindus category with the aim to keep its majority of 50.4%.
Anyone who is born in this country is a Mauritian and at the same time that person has an identity which defines his theology, culture and literature. The Muslim and the Chinese, who were once enshrined within the Indian population, today have separate identities and their communities are constitutionally recognised in this country.
It's bad time that our lawmakers start thinking of how to bring changes in the constitution so that Tamils, Marathi and Telugu are given their own identities and at the same time they can be represented in the National Assembly according to their percentages they are positioned in the population.
The Tamils, an ethnic group native to Tamil Naidu, India and the north-eastern region of Sri Lanka, have a rich culture of language and literature, religion, music and songs, martial and performing arts, cuisine and folk dances namely the Karakattam. Varudapirappu, the Tamils New Year, Cavadee and other festivals are celebrated in the same vigour and pomp as the festivals of other communities. Like the Tamils, the Marathi and the Telugu also have their own cultures and wish one day to have separate identities.
It would be a missed opportunity and totally unfair if, in the process of an electoral reform and the constitution of a second republic, nothing is done to recognise the identities of the Tamils, Marathi and the Telugu.