Thursday, March 18, 2010

Penang Based Tamil Newspaper

EW Birch reported in The Vernacular Press in The Straits in 1879, that there were two Tamil newspaper in Strait Settlement before 1880. Tangai Snahen was published in Singapore between 1876-1879.

Singai Warthamani was the first Tamil newspaper published in British Malaya in 1875, joined subsequent publications by concentrating on social issues that concerned the Indian community, particularly issues that revolved around rubber estates.

Tamil Olaga Naisan was first Tamil newspaper published in Penang in 1887. Not far from the publication date of the first Tamil newspaper. It was a Muhammadan journal, published every week.

Penang Cnana Charian Daily News was published in Penang(1912-1913), Penang Janopakari Daily News(1914)

It was the reformist movement of Malayan Indians after 1920 sparked a lively journalism in Tamil language, when more educated Indian and Ceylonese come to Malaya, providing the experienced journalists for the local Tamil press. Tamil Nesan was formed in 1924 at Kuala Lumpur to provide weekly periodical which was pro Indian Congress.

The Tamil newspapers published between 1920-1948 in Penang were:

Desa Abhimani,
Penang Desa Nesan

The Indian Muslim in Penang started the Penang Desa Nesan in 1930 to promote Pan Islamism.

But sad to say none of the above listed Tamil newspapers survive until today.

Today, we have not seen any Penang based Tamil newspaper around in the market. All of the current Tamil newspapers are from Klang valley.

Related articles

1. Malaysian Indian and their mass media(1974),by John A. Lent, South East Asian Studies, Vol 12,No3 Dec 1974,

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