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Breaking Stereotypes, Christian Woman works at Hindu Crematorium in Chennai

As per Hindu rituals, a woman is not really banned from entering a cremation ground but is generally not allowed to

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Hindu Cremation. Photo: Wikipedia
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From birth till death, the circle of life is guarded by many rituals of the faith that one believes in. In Christianity, a deceased is buried, in Hinduism, he is cremated and so on. In practicing the final rites of the deceased, it is often not allowed for women to enter the cremation ground or perform any rites. Behind breaking this stereotype, there is the story of the 34-year-old Praveena Soloman who chose to take her career to a crematorium ground in Chennai, as documented by BBC on August 04, 2016.

Solomon assisting the cremation and handing the urn of ashes to a relative. Image copyrights: Nathan G
Solomon assisting the cremation and handing the urn of ashes to a relative. Image source: Nathan G

It was when an organisation named Indian Community Welfare got the contract to revive and run a 120-year-old crematorium that had gradually turned into a dumping ground, and Solomon, who was associated with the above mentioned NGO for 12 years, got the opportunity to work here. A total of 4.5 acres, the ground was reconstructed, security cameras were installed, got clean toilets made as well as protected with boundary walls; it was ensured that it doesn’t turn back to the drinking spot that it earlier was.

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An English graduate from University of Madras and a mother of two, Praveena Soloman started working at Valankadu crematorium ground located in the Anna Nagar in 2014, a very busy place where Soloman is the administrator. She looks after all arrangements before the dead body is readied for the funeral. The entire day of the funeral goes hurriedly, where the body is laid for the procession and a mourner beats with percussion instruments and blows a shell to announce the arrival of the body.

As per Hindu rituals, a woman is not really banned from entering a cremation ground but is generally not allowed to. People justify this with the reason that women have a delicate heart, so they can retain the image of a body burning and often its parts falling off the pyre or even the foul smell of the body. But despite people’s remarks, the death threats, and accusations, Solomon chose to defy the predetermined notions and came and worked here, mentioned the BBC report.

Priest Irushankar Narayanan says he is proud of Solomon. Image copyrights: Nathan G
Priest Irushankar Narayanan says he is proud of Solomon.
Image copyrights: Nathan G

Appointing Solomon as an administrator here was a way to create a peaceful and safe environment for women who could now pay the last tributes to their deceased loved ones, said ICWO chief AJ Hariharan to BBC. It has become more of a trend for women to enter the cremation ground and pay final rituals in the obituary.

Solomon further added that it was emotionally overwhelming, to begin with the cremations. On the first day at her job, she cremated 7 corpses and cried every time with the people, who cried for the departed souls of someone close. The time of crisis was during the Chennai floods, when a total of 246 bodies was cremated, nearly double than the usual number.

prepared by Chetna Karnani, at NewsGram. Twitter: @karnani_chetna

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  • AJ Krish

    Soloman needs to be appreciated for her strength and courage to continue in this profession despite the death threats.

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Nokia’s Factory in Chennai Starts Manufacturing of 5G Radio Equipment

According to Malik, the standardisation of 5G technology will be ready by the first quarter of the next year

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Android Pie 9.0 comes to Nokia 6.1.

Nokia manufacturing unit in Chennai has started manufacturing 5G radio equipment called base stations, the company announced on Thursday.

One of the largest telecom equipment manufacturing plants in the country, the plant recently hit the 4 million unit annual production milestone of 2G, 3G and 4G units.

It serves both domestic as well as global customers, shipping to over 100 countries.

“Nokia was the first to leverage the skills and capabilities in India and start manufacturing telecom networks equipments in the country in 2008. We are now pioneering 5G manufacturing in the country, making India and the world ready for 5G.” said Sanjay Malik, Senior Vice President and Head of the India Market at Nokia.

Nokia’s Chennai factory produces a range of telecom equipment across technologies, and now will include 5G gear in its shipment as network deployments start.

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It serves both domestic as well as global customers, shipping to over 100 countries. Pixabay

Public sector telecom operator Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) this month signed a MoU with Nokia Solutions and Networks India Pvt Ltd for Industry 4.0.

Industry 4.0 is the next level of automation in manufacturing where machines become smart, share data and includes Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud computing.

You May Also Like to Read About- Samsung To Commence The First Large-Scale 5G Trials in India Next Year

Nokia Solutions has already started shipping out 5G ready telecom equipment out of its facility near here to the US, Asia Pacific, Europe and other places.

According to Malik, the standardisation of 5G technology will be ready by the first quarter of the next year. (IANS)