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The Semmozhi Maanadu 2010, Coimbatore – Is it worth an investment or not??

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Aakshay Subramaniam:

As the people in Coimbatore gear up for probably the biggest occasion the city has ever faced, there are a few who amid the excitement, debate among themselves – this is sure going to be great or maybe this is just another blind-folded scandal?

“Part of your heritage in this society is the opportunity to become financially independent.”

-Jim Rohn.

What it is:-

The Semmozhi Maanadu is a rare festive occasion where Tamil lovers from all around the globe meet up and remind themselves about the richness and prosperity of the Tamil language and culture – the great poet Thiruvalluvar, the author of Tamil Ramayana Kambar and so on. To the young it is a show of awe, a chance for them to learn about their ancestors and for the grown-ups; it is a reminder of pride of the rich culture they were brought up in. People walk with their heads held high as the occasion is observed with a flamboyant display of native dances, songs and recitals from old texts.

Semmozhi Maanadu 2010:-

The city of Coimbatore being the host of the Semmozhi Maanadu, 2010 has faced drastic changes in terms of infrastructure. Day by day the city is slowly turning into a tourist attraction. New roads are being laid, new lamp posts are lit, new buildings are built and new people keep pouring in. This Maanadu has a big impact on the society as it not only socially benefits us (Tamil culture and heritage) but also enhances the understanding of one of the oldest languages of the world.

The Plan:-

The Maanadu is to be held on the 23rd of July, when all educational institutions and offices will remain closed. The preparations for the Maanadu are progressing; nearly 2000 dancers in groups of 50 each will perform 40 dance forms. People get to see dances such as Mayillatam, Karakattam, Poikaal Kuthirai aattam etc. Historical characters like Purananootru Thaai, Manuneethi Cholan, Manimekalai, Kannaki, Porkai Pandian and others are brought alive. It has been estimated that almost 1000 people are working on the conception and design. A temple-like structure has been built with perfection being showcased in every nook and corner. People are lost in wonder for the artists who built this and the members involved in the planning and execution of the event. As the date approaches closer, the police force becomes vigilant and guards every inch of the city. Police officers stand at an arms length near the main building inspecting everyone thoroughly.

The Glitch in the Plan:-

With a budget of about a few hundred crores – a staggering amount, people become avidly interested to know whether there are proper records for every transaction made.

· As huge amounts of money pass down many hands, a few changes in the gross amount are hardly noticeable or traceable.

· People are kept informed now and then that a certain part of the money has been spent on building roads, or mounting the stage or building the edifices etc. It has been stated that Rs.16 crore was spent on road widening and almost Rs.2 crore was spent on setting up new lights. Okay. So where is the rest and are you sure that “all” the money was spent on the said activities?

· We inherit money, we inherit habits but these days people have begun to inherit power. As long someone related to you by blood is politically sound then so are you. It can be seen that the ruling government is largely by the kith and kin of those in power.

· Furthermore politicians have a history of filling their coffers as and when they see any potential opportunity!

· There are people who feel uneasy at these aspects but with absolutely no authority for questioning, are forced to stay silent and watch the show.

Conclusion:

One look at the event – the way it was planned, repeatedly revised and executed explains to us the overwhelming work done by the various people involved. Scandal or no-scandal, it is an era where technology and industrial growth are developing at neck-breaking speeds and it is very essential for us to remind ourselves of the past and how we would be incomplete without it.

The writer is a correspondent of Youth Ki Awaaz.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

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