Ruler is Father and Mother: Hindu Concept in Tamil and Sanskrit Literature! (Post No.3626)


Written by London swaminathan


Date: 11 FEBRUARY 2017


Time uploaded in London:- 8-22 am


Post No. 3626



Pictures are taken from various sources; thanks.






Hindus considered the Rulers as their father and mother. Generally, Guru and God are praised as father and mother by the Hindus in their hymns. But considering a ruler as a close relative is unique to Tamil and Sanskrit literature. Such a concept existed in ancient India at least 2000 years ago! We have got evidence for this in Tamil and Sanskrit literature. Though we have numerous references I will just give some proofs from both the literatures.


Following slokas (couplets) are from Raghuvamsa of Kalidasa (


प्रजानां विनयाधानाद्रक्षणाद्भरणादपि।
स पिता पितरस्तासां केवलं जन्महेतवः॥ १-२४

prajānāṁ vinayādhānādrakṣaṇādbharaṇādapi |
sa pitā pitarastāsāṁ kevalaṁ janmahetavaḥ || 1-24



Orienting his subjects in good conduct, protecting them from fears or dangers, according succour with welfare facilities, king DilIpa became their de facto father while their actual parents remained parents de jure. [1-24]



भूतानुकम्पा तव चेदियं गौरेका भवेत्स्वस्तिमती त्वदन्ते।
जीवन्पुनः शश्वदुपप्लवेभ्यः प्रजाः प्रजानाथ पितेव पासि॥ २-४८

bhūtānukampā tava cediyaṁ gaurekā bhavetsvastimatī tvadante|
jīvanpunaḥ śaśvadupaplavebhyaḥ prajāḥ prajānātha piteva pāsi || 2-48

“If, however, this be thy compassion for living beings, this cow will be the single one rendered happy by your death: on the other hand if alive, oh thou refuge of the people, thou canst like a father always guard thy subjects from calamities…  [2-48]


तेनार्थवान् लोभपराङ्मुखेन
तेन घ्नता विघ्नभयम् क्रियावान्।
तेनास लोकः पितृमान्विनेत्रा
तेनैव शोकापनुदेव पुत्री ॥ १४-२३

tenārthavān lobhaparāṅmukhena
tena ghnatā vighnabhayam kriyāvān |
tenāsa lokaḥ pitṛmānvinetrā
tenaiva śokāpanudeva putrī  || 14-23


On account of his being disinclined to avarice, his subjects became rich; on account of his removing the fear of obstacles they carried on their religious ceremonies; on account of his being their leader they had a father in him; and on account of all grief being removed by him they were, as if, blessed with a good son. [14-23]


In Sakuntalam drama of Kalidasa:



“Here is His Majesty

Wearined caring for his subjects

as if they were his own children” (5-3)



On the other hand, what does it matter whether there is an heir or not;

Proclaim thus to my subjects; Whosoever

suffers the loss of one dearly loved

shall find in Dudhyanta one to take his place

in all relations deemed lawful and holy (7-25)


Kautilya in his Arthasastra also says the same (4-3; 7-16)




  1. Having ascertained his learning in the Veda and (the purity of) his conduct, the king shall provide for him means of subsistence in accordance with the sacred law, and shall protect him in every way, as a father (protects) the lawful son of his body.





We find the same lines in a Tamil inscription of Raja Raja II

“Father for those who have no fathers, Mother for those who lost mothers

Sons for those who have no issues, life of all the living beings”




Mankudi kizar (verse 396) says that the ruler Vataatru Eziniyaathan is the relative of every citizen who has no relations.


“Most quoted Tamil verse in Purananuru (192) of Kaniyan Punkundran says

Every town is my home town; everyone is my kinsman”


Nari Veruuththalaiyar (verse 5) praises the king as father and his subjects as his children.


Marudan Ilangan (Kalitokai verse 99) praises the king as Mother to everyone.


Mosikeeranaar of verse 186 (Purananuru) says that the world depends upon the king for everything.


Another strange coincidence is the word for people in Tamil and Sanskrit are Makkal and Prajaah respectively. Both meant people and children both the languages!



All these references show that Ancient India had one culture and all the arguments that Aryans and Dravidians came to India from outside are false.








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