Thiruvalluvar Day

The Thiruvalluvar Day is celebrated annually on January 15th or January 16th in Tamil Nadu as a part of Pongal (or Sankranti) celebrations. The day is dedicated to honoring the contribution of the Tamil poet Thiruvalluvar, who is best known for his literary work, the Thirukkural. The Thirukkural is a collection of 1330 couplets divided into 133 sections, and is considered one of the greatest works of Tamil literature.

About Thiruvalluvar

Despite his literary legacy, little is known about Thiruvalluvar’s life. There is no information available about his family, birthplace, or religious affiliation. Some believe that he lived in Mylapore, Chennai, and was born under a tree in the Ekambareshwar (Lord Shiva) temple complex. Others suggest that he lived in the 8th century. In 1976, the Tamil Nadu Government built the Valluvar Kottam in his honor and a 133-foot statue was erected in Kanniyakumari.


The Thirukkural, written by Thiruvalluvar, is divided into three parts: Dharma, Artha, and Kama. Dharma represents virtue, Artha represents wealth, and Kama represents love. The couplets in the Thirukkural define moral living, ideal characteristics of every relationship in the world, and moral responsibilities of every human being.

Valluvar Year

The Valluvar year is a calendar system that has an additional 31 years. For example, the Valluvar year 2022 (Gregorian year) is 2053. The idea of Valluvar Day was initiated by the former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, M Karunanidhi.

Why is the Day Celebrated on January 16 or January 17?

The resolution to celebrate Thiruvalluvar Day was passed on January 17, 1935, by Kali Sivakannuswami Pillai and Padmashri Suppayya. The first Thiruvalluvar Day was celebrated in May 1935. However, over time the celebrations began to fade away. In 1954, an Elam scholar from Sri Lanka took efforts to revive the day. Today, the day is widely celebrated in Tamil Nadu, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar.



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