Kovan (folk Singer)

Kovan (folk Singer)

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Category: Music

Kovan (folk Singer) Profile

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  • Kovan (folk Singer)

Kovan (folk Singer) Biography

Kovan is a well-known folk singer associated with Tamil culture. He is a cultural activist who belongs to Makkal Kalai Ilakkiya Kazhagam (People's Art and Literary Association), an activist cultural and arts group from Tamil Nadu. Many of his songs and performances deal with social issues of marginalized people. He once wrote, composed and performed folk songs criticizing government-run alcohol shops, liquor policy and the governments in power. It grabbed the attention of AIADMK led state government, resulting in his arrest. For anti-Jayalalithaa song, he was slapped with sedition charge. His arrest was widely criticised by several human rights groups like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International. He was arrested in 2018 for similar reasons, this time for slamming Ratha yathra of the prime minister, through his song.


Kovan hails from Oraiyur, Trichy district of Tamil Nadu, and he was born into a humble family. His real name is S. Sivadas. He studied from Industrial Training Institute, Nagapattinam. Currently he is a full-time folk singer. Many of his songs criticizing politicians and leaders have grabbed public and media attentions, and most of his controversial songs have earned more than 1 million views. Attempts have also been made from government side to remove such songs for websites.


Kovan was reportedly arrested for the lyrics of two songs he had penned in 2015 for ‘Moodu Tasmac Moodu’. He was beaten up and pulled into the police vehicle forcefully. After the arrest he came to spotlight for a while, and also received support from many activists and social organizations across Tamil Nadu. The songs also went viral over net. The lyrics of Moodu Tasmac Moodu appealed to the ruling party to close liquor shops because it causes harm to citizens. His works are supported by Vinavu website, which uploads his videos. In 2018 he was arrested for singing the viral Rath Yatra song slamming Prime Minister Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party.

Published: February 18, 2019

Updated: February 18, 2019


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