Chennai: News Today, Maalai Sudar & Talk Media Managing Director and Group Editor, TR Jawahar’s book, “Why TN is forbidden land” was released by Ramakrishna Mission Ashrama, T Nagar, Secretary, Swami Padmasthananda during the prize distribution function of Talk Media’s Mega Kolu Contest held at Infosys Hall, Ramakrishna Mission Matriculation School in the city last evening.
The book, a compilation of articles written by Jawahar in his column Point Blank after the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, explains various factors that make Tamilnadu a forbidden land, away from the national mainstream. The book also has a collection of handwritten articles penned by him from 2013 to April 2019.
Reaction & Action
Speaking about why he chose to write the articles, Jawahar said, ”In the 2019 elections, BJP won all over India, but drew a blank in Tamilnadu. Soon after the results, many media friends from the north called me and asked ”Why are all the TN people voting differently away from the national mainstream?” I thought initially that a reaction was warranted and wrote one article, but then, because of the feedback and encouragement I received, I thought to make a thorough study of the whole issue and bring it out as a series. That’s how I started writing ”Why TN is a forbidden land” explaining why the State is insular and isolated from the rest of the country.”
”In the initial articles I have taken a strong view against the pro-Sanskrit and pro-Hindi mindset of the North Indians and in the later articles I have also tried to talk about how the so-called Tamil chauvinists have tried to misuse the support for Tamil. Thanks to the readers, the articles are well received and they were also carried by north Indian websites and magazines and bagged bouquets and brickbats. It was a good lifetime exercise for me. So I brought this out as a book.”
Swami Padmasthananda presented the first copy of the book to Maalai Sudar Editor M Subramanian.
The Swamiji said in his address, ”In spite of facing several oppositions and criticisms, Jawahar continues to write what he thinks best for three decades now. The book has thought-provoking articles which show that he is a deep thinker.”
He also spoke about the important role that newspapers play, quoting an example of how a newspaper article made Swami Vivekananda participate in the famous Parliament of the World’s Religions? in Chicago 125 years ago.
Swami Padmasthananda presented books written by Swami Vivekananda to Jawahar.
Moment of pride
At the event, around 150 prizes were distributed to winners of Talk Media’s Mega Kolu Contest. Popular Carnatic singers, Mambalam Sisters- Vijayalakshmi and Chithra, were the chief guests.
Vijayalakshmi said, ”Some years ago, the interest and importance given for Navarathri and kolu were low. But now, we women, who have brilliant multi-tasking abilities, have started following our good old traditions again. It is good to see working women making the best use of social media, to plan, organise and invite their neighbours, friends and family to visit their houses during the festival of Navarathri.”
She heaped laurels on Talk group of neighbourhood newspapers, saying, ”Talk Media is doing a great job by beautifully organising contests like this. This is a valuable service to preserve our culture and tradition.”
How they won
Explaining about the contest, Kausalya Jawahar, who was instrumental behind the competition, said, ”the number of participants this year is very high and we are more than happy about it. There is no big difference between the first prize winner and fifth prize winner. It was a very tough task for us to rank the participants as first, second and third as every kolu was unique in its own way. The primary aim of Talk Media’s Kolu contest is to encourage the participants to follow the tradition, without any flaws in it.”
She explained about the various criteria of judging the kolu in a detailed manner. She also emphasised that expensive kolu dolls and decoratives alone will not fetch points, rather, creativity and precision in handmade craft works and kolam will help participants win the contest.
Neela Kesavaraju, one among the winners of the contest, said, ”Unlike other Kolu competitions, Talk Media’s annual contest gives importance to authentic tradition and creativity, rather than focusing on decor and number of kolu dolls displayed. The whole concept of this contest encourages people to follow our traditions and culture.”
Popular Carnatic vocalist Gayathri Girish also bagged a prize in the competition this year. Speaking about it, she said, ”It is a very good idea and initiative taken by Talk Media to conduct this competition zone-wise every year in a grand manner through which we get a chance to meet various winners. The prizes are also given to many people without restricting it to three prizes which is a welcome initiative.”
DIAL TO READ
Call 9176658744 to get your copy of Jawahar’s book “Why TN is forbidden land”.