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Tholvi Nilayena (Oomai Vizhigal)

Lyrics: Aabavaanam
Composer: Manoj-Kiyan
Singer: P.B. Srinivas

Released in August 1986, 'Tholvi Nilayena', famously sung by P.B. Srinivas after a long gap in his career, is known as an inspirational and motivational song for  those on the brink of defeat.

The song came at a very crucial point in the history of Eelam; India had started to get involved after the Thimpu talks. 

Although the film 'Oomai Vizhigal' was not about the struggle of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam or any other Tamil militant group, many believe that this song was written with the Tamil Eelam freedom fighters and the struggle in mind.

The lyrics were penned by Aabavaanan, a writer who did not have a long standing career in the cinema industry but he certainly made his mark with this particular song.

Tholvi nilayena ninaithaal, manithan vaazhvai ninaikkalaama?
Vaazhvai sumai ena ninaiththu, thaayin kanavai mithikkalaama?
Urimai ilanthom, udamaiyum ilanthom, unarvai ilakkalaama?
Unarvai koduthu uyiraai valartha kanavai marakkalaama?

Vidiyalukkilai thooram, vidiyum manathil innum en baaram?
Un nenjam muzhuvathum veeram, irunthum kannil innum en eeram?

Translation:

If one believes that defeat is permanent, how can you face life? Thinking of life as a burden, would you destroy your forefather's dreams? We lost our rights and our possessions but can we loose our spirit too?

A new beginning is not far off so why is your heart still heavy with sorrow? You are bravery personified and yet your eyes are filled with tears. 

Even the LTTE itself, which had its own patriotic music industry, is said to have played this song at ceremonies to encourage and build up morale.

Set to the notes of the classical raga Sivaranjani, a Sampoorna raga which consists of all seven notes, it is a very meditative and deep raga, usually sung at night.

Sivaranjani usually represents emotions of melancholy and anguish and this can be clearly seen in other cinema songs tuned to this raga such as the hugely popular 'Porale Ponnuthaaye' from the film 'Karuthamma'.

Listen to the song and see the clip from Oomai Vizhigal below: