Tuesday, June 21, 2011




A Short-Story in Tamil (NIGAAMAAVIN KANNEER)
written by M.G.SURESH

Translated into English by Latha Ramakrishnan


Mr.M.G.Suresh is a name to reckon with in the in the field of Neo-Tamil Literary Writings. Primarily a novelist one who experiments with the various styles of post-modern writing he has also penned short-stories, critical essays on social and literary issues and also reviews. Along with his friend Mr.R.Ravichandran who is a publisher too Mr.M.G.Suresh was instrumental in bringing out a Tamil Literary Quarterly called PANMUGAM for more than four years.

His novels do not follow a set pattern but in each novel he consciously tries different styles of writing. His novels, ATLANTIS MANIDHAN MATRUM SILARUDAN(Atlantis Man With Several Others), ALEXANDARUM ORU KOEPPAI THAENEERUM(Alexander and A Cup of Tea), SILANDHI(Spider), 37, YUREKAA ENDRORU NAGARAM( A City Called Yureka) have won wide-acclaim from discerning readers and literary critics.

And, his writings have the much-needed element of readability. He has also penned several introductory books on reputed men of post-modernism such as Roland Barthes, Derrida etc. Mr.Suresh is familiar with the cine-field also, writing script for several movies. He has written books on the History of cinema and on World Cinema.

He can be reached at the following


A Short-Story in Tamil (NIGAAMAAVIN KANNEER)
written by M.G.SURESH
Translated into English by Latha Ramakrishnan

 Any novel can be briefly written in just two pages – (including Tolstoy’s War and Peace) – This is the Philosophy of Borges. Seems like, same is the case with short-story. A six-page short-story can be easily said in a matter of two paragraphs. And, that holds good to this short-story also. This story is about Nigaamaa and her grandpa. Those who are interested in reading this, can continue reading from the next paragraph. Those who have no interest can read the final two paragraphs alone. They can ignore other paragraphs. Indeed, nothing wrong.

That Nigaamaa’s tale is told here is accidental. There is nothing pre-planned or pre-conditioned in this. Taking the volume which contains the names of those who have citizenship rights, with eyes closed I, the Story-Teller, opens a page randomly. The page seen blow is wide-opened right before my eyes.

220345, Nigazh , Male, 2030, I Street, Aagaaya Nagar.
2203452, Nigar, Female, 7080,
8th Street
, Bodhisathva Nagar.
2203453, Nigalika, Female, 3080,
27th Avenue
, Punidha Nagar.
2203454, Nigazhavan, Male, 30608,
37th Road
Marx Square
2203455, Nigaai, Male, 78401,
107th Rd
Derrida Square
2203456, Nigaam, Male, 37460, 10th Cross St,
Nietzsche Square
2203457, Nigaamaa, Female, 12384, I Avenue, Rainbow square.
2203458, Nigaami, Female, 8889,

Yuang Tsuang Rd
Zen Square

2203459, Nigoayath, Male, 30,
8th Road
, Meteor Nagar.
2203460, Nigaar, Female, 121,
20th Street
Engels Square

In the list of names found in the above page I wanted to touch one. And, when I did the same with eyes closed, my index-finger came to stand on the name of Nigaamaa. And, Nigaamaa’s form appeared in front of my eyes.

Nigaamaa who was very busy doing the calculations on the Computer-screen suddenly remembered her grandpa. In the morning she made him sit in front of the dining table and pushed the Daily into his hands. Conversing with him she prepared the breakfast. Sitting on the other side, facing him, she ate. Then, in her haste to leave for office she left him as he was and went out. She should have made him lie on the cot. Grandpa shouldn’t be allowed to sit at a stretch for more than three hours.. If so, sweat would start overflowing from all the pores of his body. Then, handling him would become the most difficult affair.
The very thought of it made Nigaamaa feel miserable. Feeling intensely agitated she looked at her wrist-watch. The time was 7 p.m. The Office would be over by 5 o’ clock. Those who could leave the office by 5 o’ clock are indeed blessed souls; successful lovers; those leading a happy-go-lucky life; those who won’t bury themselves in their work just the way the ostrich buries its face inside the sand. Nigaamaa is not one such fortunate beings. She is one, scornfully thrown into the Universe. One who lives in constant fear and apprehension.  One who is destined to live with people who are always hostile. And, one who is damned to be at the office till 7 p.m., working non-stop.

She should go home at once. Hurriedly she arranged the official documents, registers, files, important papers etc., and kept them safely. She piled them up neatly and made the table look clean and tidy. Pushed the chair backwards with a kick and when it moved aside with a screech, she stood up and began to walk with her footwear producing a rhythmic thud.

The office was almost empty. Here and there some ostriches had their heads buried deep in their respective jobs.

In her thirty-two years of age Nigaamaa had fallen in love with some seven guys. And, she is still in search of a genuine, solid love. No chap befitting such an expectation has come her way. These men show not even half the interest and eagerness that they show for getting familiar with a woman with the ultimate aim of going to bed with her, in sharing their hearts and feelings. Nigaamaa is afflicted with the doubt whether such emotions as Love, Affection, Melting Moments etc are foolish and meaningless. Just like most of the men, majority of women too are of the same mould.

That a man’s body, once experienced in intercourse resembles a sanitary napkin- so Vaathsalyaa had told once. That the woman look like a ‘Condom’ – Ursavan had commented.  This is an era which makes people feel as but lonely individuals. An era which provides one nothing to hold on to or lean against. This is a curse. And the fact that she is not aware of the curse can well be another, added curse in Nigaamaa’s case.

Nigaamaa came to the place where the vehicles were standing in rows. The same moment when she saw the scooter the scooter was also looking at her. She went near the scooter and fondly caressed its head. Scooters never lie. ; they don’t betray you; they don’t play petty politics. She sat on the seat of her scooter and pressed the starter-switch. The limbs of the vehicle came to life.
The dense traffic on the road caused her irritation. As it was late evening the road was bathing in the blinding flash of electric-lights. The buildings were scattering colourful lights on all sides. When the heart is plunged in gloom even the light outside is equivalent to darkness, Nigammaa mused. Since the day before, her mental equilibrium had suffered a setback. For she had never thought that Ayan could be such a cheat. Despite all her pre-cautions to be careful in her dealing with men she had somehow fallen a prey to this betrayer. Of course, he was her seventh lover only. Some females have successfully gone beyond twenty-thirty lovers. It is only because she was very cautious that she didn’t go beyond seven in all these years. Ayan pursued her in a hot chase and caught hold of her and also made her lose her Self when she was a little unguarded. 

Of course right from the beginning there were opportune moments to leave Ayan. It was indeed surprising that she let herself be caught unawares. In one of those days when his hand trespassed into her in-skirt taking advantage of the melting moment when she was feeling giddy with the headiness of love Nigaamaa said with great embarrassment.

“I am sorry, but it can’t be today”.

“But, why?’

“I am having my ‘periods’. That too, second day”.


“ It would be ok, if it is the first day.. But, second day the bleeding would be heavy”.

At once, his face darkened. Angrily he spat out: “So ill-fated I am”.

What relevance my menstruation can have with his fate or destiny. Moreover, why should he spit venom at her for this… What wrath is this that he couldn’t wait for just two more days.. Such a luscious scoundrel… he should have been shown the doors long before….

Then, on another day_

“If we are to live together, your grandpa shouldn’t be with us”.

This she could never agree to. Isn’t it a fact that she had spent most part of her life in the company of her grandfather. Since the time her father and mother had started living separately it was her grandfather who had looked after her with all the affection in the world. When she was studying in the School he used to bring coffee in a flask to School every morning at about ii o’ clock. And, by one o’ clock in the afternoon he would come again bringing her lunch. Nigaamaa would feel a great sense of shame. Her fellow-students would mock at her. In those days she was not able to realize the depth of his love for her which made him come in the hot sun with a staggering gait. She would shout at him: “Oh, Thaathaa(grandpa), why do you embarrass me thus?”. Her grandfather would merely smile affectionately. He who would never lose his composure at any time would turn terribly agitated if something befell her. His eyes would at once be filled with tears. Once, when she was playing basket-ball she suffered an ordinary injury but seeing that her grandfather turned anguish-personified.

“Your grandpa or me – decide “, said Ayan haughtily. She cannot lose her grandpa, the very embodiment of love and affection. He is very important to her. At that moment itself she could have severed her relationship with him. Not doing so was indeed her folly.

The mere recollection of what happened yesterday day before made acid boil within. In that damned evening hours Ayan had come. Yesterday Nigaamaa had made her grandpa sit on the sofa in the front room. The moment he entered inside Ayan pushed a newspaper into the hands of her grandfather. At that instant, her grandfather’s eyes stared at the newspaper. Then, Ayan pulled her forcibly and dragged her into the bed-room. Without waiting for a moment he pushed her towards the bed and made her fall on it. And, with a vengeful passion never before experienced he fucked her.

“What has come over you?”

At first he didn’t answer. Then, after a while he said: “ I have got a job in Dubai. I have to leave tomorrow itself. Hereafter, I don’t know when I would see you again. May be, this is our last meeting”.

He said casually.

For a moment Nigaamaa turned utterly paralyzed. ‘So, he has got a new job. And, he has not disclosed it to her till that day. Even now, he didn’t tell it before the intercourse but giving the news to her all too casually, after the communion. If he had disclosed it earlier she would have become upset which might have come in the way of having sex with her. Taking into consideration all these possibilities he has kept it hidden from her till they finished having sex. Instead of this it would have been better if he had pushed her down from the top of a tall building with eighteen floors.

In her intense rage she shouted at him with intense sorrow and bitterness. Whatever she could lay her hands on she took them and threw at him. Thank god, a vessel which could have hit her grandpa’s head just brushed it and fell away. Instantly Nigaamaa stopped her war in great agitation and ran towards her beloved grandpa. She examined his head. Thank god, nothing serious. When she looked back furiously he had disappeared. Weighed down with great shame, disappointment, despair and sorrow she burst out in tears. Grandfather sat there in silence, drowned in the Daily.

On the way a cafe came into view. With the prevailing mood it would be impossible for her to cook tonight. She pondered over buying home something like Spaghetti, Burger etc. Grandpa wouldn’t want anything. Enough if something is purchased for her. She halted her scooter and went inside. She bought burger and Pietzza. What to buy for a drink…? At home a bottle of wine is available. Damn him, when she started loving Ayan, it was bought for celebrating their togetherness. It would be appropriate to have the same bottle of wine to end their relationship. It would indeed be a logical move. And, it is evident that unless she drinks sleep wouldn’t come her way tonight.

Feeling terribly restive, Nigaamaa opened the door of her apartment.   As the time was well past late evening the interior of the apartment was plunged in darkness. When she switched on the light the front-room came to life. Feeling intensely agitated she entered into the house and crossed the front- room in a moment and got into the dining hall. In front of the dining-table her grandfather remained sitting in exactly the same posture in which she had made him it in the morning, without any movement. With her heart beating unbearably loud she moved closer to him and watched. Fortunately there was no sweat flowing out of his pores. It was due to the terrible shock caused by the great betrayal of Ayan that she had forgotten about grandpa and left him there itself.

That too, without even switching on the night-lamp. The more she thought of her lapse the more she hated her own self with all her heart. For the last nine hours or so her grandfather was left to sit in the same place, in the same posture. He should be made to lie immediately. Without wasting any time she lifted him as if lifting a doll, Without causing him any jerk she carried him to the bedroom and made him lie on the cot. His eyes shone brightly. Looking at his face, Nigaamaa became heart-broken. She couldn’t control her tears. She wept bitterly. Her miserable life; fellow-men and women who refuse to give her love and affection; her lonely, island-like life; the betrayal of men like Ayan – she complained about all these and more to her beloved grandpa. She lamented. “Henceforth there would never be room for any man in my heart throughout my life. You are the only man whom I love with all my heart, my beloved grandpa”, cried she. Her grandfather lay there, with his eyes fixed on the ceiling.

Now-a-days “those who have stopped thinking”( this is how the dead are referred to these days, isn’t it so?). And the dead are not buried or cremated. With the help of Formalin injections the bodies are preserved without shrinking or decaying. This is the extension of the human psychology which recollects the dead with the help of photographs and books lined up in the book-shelves. If the photograph is a single-dimension Memento the embalmed body is multi-dimensional Memento.  It is all meaningless. Nigaamaa has her grandfather embalmed. These bodies can be made to stand; made to sit; but, most of the time they should be kept lying on the bed. If they are made to sit for long the chemical liquid would begin to seep out of their bodies. Then, it would become very difficult to bring them back to ‘normalcy’. Suddenly a thought flashed across Nigaamaa’s mind. If only Thatha were to be really alive now, would he be merely lying there, staring at the ceiling? The thought made her heart ache unbearably and when she was about to explode in tears it happened. stopping her tears Nigaama  observed her grandpa’s face intently.  There were drops of tears sprouting and welling up in his eyes.

Note: The original short-story in Tamil appeared in the Literary Magazine called PANMUGAM, dated July-September issue.

Monday, June 20, 2011



                               CHENNAI CORPORATION SCHOOLS!


_Written by Latha Ramakrishnan
We are a group of women, all office bearers of a renowned social service organization called the Monday Charity Club. We felt the need to carry out a project connected with primary education for under privileged children. Hence we started the Sri Ramacharan Charitable Trust® in 1999 that has successfully established the Montessori Method in 20 Balwadis and Corporation School units across seven centers in Chennai.
There are seven volunteer trustees and all the donations received are directly used for charitable purposes.
Our Micro Credit Scheme helps poor people to start small business ventures or pay school fees.
We felt the need to focus on young children of an impressionable age. We wanted to give them proper education coupled with having a righteous, calm and blissful attitude towards life.
The result was the introduction of the Montessori Style Instruction in the Chennai Corporation Schools and the Balwadis starting in 2005.   _ Sri Ramacharan Charitable Trust


  And, we have a lot more quotable quotes which highlight the importance of children. In the same way we have very many a maxim that drive home the importance of Education for the uplift of an individual and the society as a whole. The world renowned Tamil Poet Bharathiar had said that educating a poor child (or, for that matter, even an adult) is undoubtedly the best of all noble deeds.

The psychiatrists claim that the experiences that the child undergoes before it reaches the age five and that the impressions it gains during its initial five years of existence on Earth and that which it learns in this period have a lasting effect on its entire life and they shape his adulthood, so to say.
This is the reason why Madam Montessori found the exemplary system of education for the toddlers which has proved itself a time-tested method of teaching, the world over. Montessori System of Education aims at a comprehensive, wholesome development of the child by instilling self-confidence and by making it feel independent and self-sufficient.  But, as this method of teaching the toddlers involves a lot of tools and accessories which the children are taught to handle by themselves, it is somewhat costly and hence only very few private schools have so far been running their kindergarten classes following Montessori method. When this being the case there was no chance of the children of Government Schools to have access to this boon of an Educational System.
But, no society can hope to move forward without giving the best of education to the children of weaker sections. And, it is to the credit of Chennai Corporation that with an adequate realization of this simple truth it has set out to introduce Montessori Method of Teaching for the tiny toddlers in Corporation Schools.

Initially through the Parent-Teacher Association it joined hands with the Chennai-based Sriramacharan Charitable Trust, a Service Organization and introduced this System of Education to the students of the pre-primary classes and seeing its positive impact on the toddlers and the way it has won the unanimous appreciation of the parents the Chennai Corporation has taken up the cause of imparting this method of Education to children in right earnest, in the true spirit of uplifting the poor and the weaker sections of the society.

Sri Ramacharan Charitable Trust has also initiated the pioneering project of Micro-Credit through which small vendors and poor students are given loan to enable them to come up in life. “The timely loan has made a firm and lasting impact in the life of many deserving individuals and we are happy to see their progress”, says Mrs. Padmini Gopalan, the founder-president of Sri Ramacharan Trust, a soft-spoken but firm-minded lady. She has never been conscious of her advancing age as her mind is always occupied with the task of critically analyzing the various aspects and complexities of life and human relationships and she is ever eager to discuss all sorts of worthy and perplexing issues threadbare. She is open to differing views and healthy debates. An out-and-out unassuming person, Mrs.Padmini Gopalan is a very discerning reader and well-versed in Carnatic Music. All forms of good art aims at ennobling man’s life, within and without, holds she with great conviction.

Right now her mind is too full of taking the Montessori system of education to as many poor and needy children as possible. “Children are to be treated with love and care and above all with due respect. I am pained to see the way many, both at home and in school ill-treat them and intimidate them, out of ignorance and sheer indifference, observes Mrs.Padmini Gopalan with pain in her voice.

At present there are some twenty Corporation Schools in the City of Chennai imparting this method of teaching to the children. And, in all the Schools where this system of education is introduced a significant improvement in the learning skills and activities of the children, is seen and felt by the parents and the school authorities. The disciplined and confidant way in which they conduct themselves is a treat to watch! Going to School is no longer viewed as an ordeal by these toddlers for now they have a world of their own where they can explore a lot through Sight, Sound and Touch! Hence, there is a significant increase in the number of new admissions as the Heads of Schools happily inform. The parents are happy to see their little children conducting themselves with self-discipline, eager to learn things and the real values of life. Further, in this Method of Teaching the teacher-student bond is not mechanical or that exists between a master and menial but lively and reassuring with the children regarding their teachers as their friends.

Hope this constructive initiative of Chennai Corporation Schools would continue. Of course, for any innovative approach there would surely be some resistance due to many reasons. Driven by a feeling of insecurity as regards their place and position or with vested interests there may be some who oppose any new beginning. I only wish that this rare opportunity of receiving the best possible primary education should not be denied to the children of the weaker sections of our society and to this end the parents and the teachers should be sensitive enough to realize the importance of children and their well-being for the peace and prosperity of any society.

And, a real good initiative like this which is aimed at making possible a wholesome development as regards the mental and physical activities of children before the age of five, enhancing their physical and mental capabilities, their interest in learning lessons and skills and cultivating good habits in them, a system that creates a friendly atmosphere for them, with the teachers interacting with them as friends and co-learners, teaching them to be self-confident and self-sufficient should continue at all cost.

And, I sincerely feel that those who strive for the uplift of the poor and downtrodden, those who work for the cause of children, those educationists endowed with humaneness and social consciousness, politicians across the board should see to it that this boon of an education brought within the reach of the weaker sections of the society should have a smooth sailing, benefiting more and more children of the weaker sections, turning them into able and intelligent human-beings.

Children are the most vulnerable for they know not what their rights are nor how to safeguard their interests and they are completely at the mercy of the elders. Hence, one and all of us are duty-bound to protect their interests and hence it becomes imperative on our part to see to it that the children of Corporation Schools continue to receive this time-tested and enriching Method of Primary School Education.

“When I was in my seventies I started this venture with a group of like-minded friends. We are happy to see it growing and benefiting children. If only we have more funds or get more financial assistance from good Samaritans who believe in Montessori System of Education we can sponsor many promising young women to undergo training in Montessori system of Education which would help a great deal in the overall development of children”, says Mrs,Padmini Gopalan.
Email id: /
Mr. Padmini Gopalan’s Mobile number: 9840969940


Friday, June 17, 2011



By Veli Rangarajan

Translation of Veli Rangarajan’s article in Tamil captioned ULAGATH THAMIZH MAANAADUM THAMIZH PADAIPPAALIGALUM( appeared in the June 2010 issue of Kalachuvadu. _Translated into English by Latha Ramakrishnan

(*Veli Rangarajan is a name to reckon with in the Little Magazine Circle of Tamil and his plays, literary reviews and articles on socio-political and literary issues having both contemporary and historical relevance have appeared in almost all the important Literary Magazines of Tamil and there are quite a number of publications to his credit.

His plays AGALIGAI, VANJAMAGAL, OOZHIKOOTHU, MADHAVI and MADHARI have won wide-acclaim from the discerning viewers.

He brought forth a literary magazine titled VELI to create awareness and sensitivity about the aesthetics, nuances and subtleties of theatre. For a period of ten years, from 1990 – 2000 VELI was published and in all there were around 40 issues which served the cause of promoting Theatre-arts.

Veli Rangarajan can be aptly called a positive link and bridge between individuals and groups with different perspectives but who have commitment and integrity in their approach to Life and Literature; Art and Society.

This article, which raises several important points to ponder regarding the status of Tamil Life and Language was originally written in Tamil by him and has been published in the June 2010 issue of Kalachuvadu, a noted Tamil Monthly. And, its English translation is given here.
Several months back a Tamil professor whom I respect a lot contacted me over the phone from Madurai and asked me whether I could take part in Semmozhi Meet and present a Paper. I told him that the literary personalities should realize the inopportune time of the Meet and also the real purpose of holding such a mammoth meet at this particular time and take a stand. He didn’t insist but left it at that, saying that he could understand my feelings.

There has been a systematic move to alienate those having reservation about holding Semmozhi Meet at this juncture as pro-LTTE. But, the fact being that there is no need for anybody to be an LTTE sympathizer to understand the pretentious, opportunistic political game of DMK in Eelam issue. This is an out and out unbiased stand in support of the cause of human rights and against the inhuman cruelties and indignities being meted out to an ethnic clan; a section of humanity. And, whether or not an LTTE sympathizer, any discerning individual can take this stand.

Therefore, the mammoth Semmozhi Meet conceived and being convened by the DMK government which continues to play its opportunistic game in Eelam issue is to be protested against. Apart from this political standpoint this move should also be approached and criticized culturally and linguistically. For, the cultural and linguistic scenario prevailing in Tamil Nadu is no secret. And, the writers and literary personalities can get an acute feel of it day-in and day-out.

.In our play-rehearsals I come across many, even well-educated ones, who find it difficult to read and recite Tamil dialogues. In my school days there was the practice of reading aloud our lessons and reciting passages from our Prose and Poetry lessons with the right tone and pauses. Only when we read and recite aloud we would be able to become intimate with the shades and subtleties of the usage of any language. Reciting aloud the lines of Thevaram, Thiruppaavai etc., we used to acquire a great feel insight into the nuances and peculiarities Thus, it was the Literary merits of Tamil Literature which was introduced to us during our school days that gave us an impetus to pursue reading more works in Tamil – the classical ones and the contemporary ones.

But, as things stand today, even among those who have M.A., M.Phil and P.hd Degrees in Tamil to their credit, with the exception of a few, there aren’t many who have a vibrant relationship with the language Tamil. That is, they treat and handle the language in a mechanical manner, from the exam-oriented and employment-oriented point of view alone. It has nothing to do with their imaginative and innovative creativity. When I chanced to visit the Tamil Departments of several colleges I felt very sad to see the way the Tamil Departments were functioning as an abandoned faculty. The teachers and students of the Tamil Departments were functioning with a kind of resigned indifference, with no faith nor confidence in the long-lasting utility of the knowledge of Tamil and many of them were nurturing a kind of inferiority complex, so to say. In the present world, with the onset of globalization, the study of Geography, History, Science, Literature, Philosophy and Fine Arts have great potentials but unfortunately these Departments in Schools and Colleges leave much to be desired and are blissfully ignorant of their potentials and uses and lag behind.

Even at the doctorate levels only very little has taken place by way of research in the case of Inscriptions, Art, Dance, Forms of Koothu, Musical Instruments, Philosophical pursuits etc., and they await the day when the possibility of having comprehensive discussions, debates, researches on their various aspects would at last arise.

Only a handful of persons who are endowed with the sense of modernity of thought and who are familiar with the contemporary literary trends have the ability and initiative to look beyond the syllabus and associate their academic study of Tamil Literature with their very life. And, only a handful of teachers at the college level are capable of guiding their students in realizing this link. It Is true that there are a whole lot of possibilities in our midst to explore and expand the boundaries of Literary Studies and to acquire new approaches and attitudes to widen the scope of these studies, the enthusiasm, will and determination to put them into practice prove abysmally low and lacking. There is not much of institutional support to such initiatives, even at the higher education level which is sad indeed.

In the colleges of Tamil Nadu Drama is yet to be acknowledged as a field that merits a separate Department. IN almost all the States of India there exists an exclusive Centre for promoting Performing Arts. But, nothing of that sort we have here, in Tamil Nadu. The Government of Tamil Nadu which has for decades and decades remained indifferent to the folk-arts which reflect the aesthetics of ordinary people, has of late resorted to show-casing them in Chennai Sangamam, once in every year, very much in the fashion of holding an annual fair. But, as the folklorists depend on their art-forms for their daily-bread they are to be nurtured on a continuous basis. In order to protect these art-forms from decay and to bring them into the main-stream of life it becomes imperative for each district to have a Performing- Arts Centre.

If only the Government of Tamil Nadu which is ready to spend a whopping 300 crore rupees for holding the Semmozhi Meet come forward to shell out a few crores and provide proper infrastructure in Schools and Colleges and so encourage the learning and pursuit of the Study of Literature and Fine-Arts a whole lot of younger generation would be benefited. But, without resorting to such constructive initiatives this government is interested in holding Meets in the manner of celebrations, full of pomp and show and empty rhetoric. In the 40 years when the Dravidian Parties were in power in Tamil Nadu three World Tamil Meet have taken place so far. But, sadly, they had all been held as festivals of the Party in Power, used to shower eulogies on their respective leaders and for employing high-sounding words in the name of doing Tamil proud and if one is to review the quality of Tamil in the field of Education as well as in other areas, if one is to review the quality of Tamil writings which enjoyed the State patronage, if one Is to review the status of Fine-Arts and Folk-Arts in these years, the encouragement and patronage extended to them, the extent of introduction made possible into the realms of the world literature and that of the regional literature of various parts of the world, one is bound to feel dissatisfied and frustrated.

It was only through Tamil Little Magazines which enjoyed no patronage from the Government and through the efforts of those discerning writers and artists that enabled quality works to come in Tamil and thus enabled Tamil language and literature to keep making their presence felt in the global arena and also to have a congenial and progressive literary climate in the Tamil Land.

At this juncture it is also important to review the kind of programmes that are being churned out by the various branches of Mass-Media – print and visual media in particular which are under the purview of the State. With abject taste and having absolutely no sensitivity these branches of Media have been promoting all kinds of trashes, having just their commercial viability as the sole criteria for their selection. The way these mass-media programmes romanticize violence, perversity and commercialize woman and the adverse impacts resulted out of these depictions, especially on the impressionable minds can be clearly seen in our midst. Domestically as well as socially human relationships have reached an all time low for which we can cite the values propagated by these mass-media as the foremost reason. Conveniently forgetting the fact that our Tamil culture had given equal status to women and so much of freedom to them, realizing their significant contribution towards the well-being of  society, today these mass-media highlight a terrible adverse attitude about women and their role in the society. They never care to take up issues which are of paramount importance to the overall development of individual, society and humanity as a whole. They never care to take into account the changing scenario of the society and respond to it in a constructive manner. They are never concerned with contributing what little they can for preparing a healthy environment to the present and future generations.

Corrupt politics, violence unleashed and the mass-media filled with sexual perversities aplenty – have all demeaned the values of life and have torn apart the very fabric of Tamil culture and Tamil society. In the great Tamil epic Silappadhikaram the friendly woman Maadhari would give shelter to Kannagi and try to keep her spirits high. When she learns about Kovalan’s death in Madurai she would feel so terrible not being able to save those who came to her seeking shelter and the sense of guilt would kill her. Poet Kamban raised voice against the authority of King Kulothungan. There were songs eulogizing the powers that be but in equal number, if not more, we have verses protesting against authority and autocracy. Thus, the Tamil society had always been a significant one in its views and style of functioning. But, as things stand today even those having immense creative potentials vie with each other to be in the good books of the powers-that-be in order to climb up the ladder of fame, for the sake of acknowledgement and recognition. Here it is worthy of mention that writer Kaalabairavan has written a stinging satire against the culture of self-glorifying awards.

Today’s true literature is but an expression in the direction of those numerous little narratives that lie scattered outside the boundaries of the centralized monolithic power and authority.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

ரிஷியின் கவிதைகள்

ரிஷியின் கவிதைகள்:


இடது ஆள்காட்டிவிரலின் மேற்புறம்
புதிதாக முளைத்த மச்சத்திற்கும்
ஆரூடங்கள் உண்டுதான்.
நிலைக்காத போதிலும்
நாளையே அழிந்துபோகுமென்றாலும்
ஒவ்வொரு புதிய மச்சமும்
பழைய (தலை) எழுத்தின் தொடர்ச்சியாய்
புதியதோர்(தலை) எழுத்தாய்
குறைந்தபட்ச எதிர்பார்ப்புகள்
புதிய விரல்களை நாடியவாறு...

2. பசி

தச்சன் கை உளி செதுக்குவதும்
பிச்சைப்பாத்திரத்தை நிரப்பக்கூடும்
அன்னதானங்களால் ஆகாதவாறு
ஒன்றாகவும் பலவாகவும் ஆகிய
காதலே போல்
அவரவர் பசியும் அவரவருக்கேயானதாக.


சமரில் பட்டதோ?

4. அதில் எதில்?

வெயில் தணிய விட்டிருக்கும் நீர்
கிளைபிரியும் ஆறாய் வழிந்தோடிக்கொண்டிருக்கிறது
அசந்தநேரம் என் காலைக் கவ்வியிழுத்து
என்னைக் கவிழ்த்துவிடக் காத்திருக்கும் ஒரு துளி
அதில் எதில்?

5. பழிக்குப்பழி

சின்னத்திரையில் ஒரு நிழலுருவம்.
சித்தியோ மாமியோ
அண்ணனோ மருமகனோ
தென்னை மரத்தடியில் இளநீரை
ஆணெனில் சீவிக்கொண்டும்
பெண்ணெனில் சீவச் சொல்லிக்கொண்டும்.

யார் தலையையோ வெட்டப்போவது
பார்வையாளர்களுக்குக் குறிப்புணர்த்தப்படுகிறது.

காற்று ஒரு சுழற்று சுழற்றிக் கண்டுபிடித்துக்
கொண்டுவந்து நிறுத்தியது அதே மரத்தடியில்-
மெகா சீரியல்

குறிபார்த்துக் காய்களை கீழே வீசியெறிந்தது