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Unseasonal hail to hit central and south India from April 11: IMD

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

The Indian Meteorological Department has forecasted rain, thunderstorms and hail to hit central and south India from April 11.

The unseasonal rains in parts of Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Maharashtra, Telangana and Karnataka will prove to be detrimental to agriculture. The western disturbance would hit Western Himalayan region from April 15 onwards.

The rain could damage crops and the farmers have been advised to delay irrigation, intercultural operation and take up crop protection measures. The harvested crop should be kept in a safe place.

Hail nets and mechanical support to young plants are also recommended.

The agricultural meteorological department has issued threat of black frost and aphids to wheat crop.

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BR Ram Kumar Finds His Passion Through The Kovil Kodai Documentary in Chennai

Today, BR Ram Kumar's dream is to make movies on the ancient heritage, science, art and lifestyles of India

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kovil kodai
Temple Umbrellas in Chennai. Image courtesy: templeumbrellas.co
  • BR Ram Kumar is a filmmaker who is mainly interested in creating documentaries that capture emotions and tradition
  • His recent documentary, Kovil Kodai, captured the traditional hand-made woven umbrella culture in Chennai
  • These umbrellas form a very important part of Chennai’s culture

The founder of Madras Documenting Company, who is 62 years old today, acquired a bachelor’s degree in Physics, and a Master’s Degree from CalArts in the USA. BR Ram Kumar used to work as an ad filmmaker before he shifted to filming documentaries on topics of his interest. Having spent his childhood in an environment of film makers, he had always been very comfortable with all the film jargon. Kumar has worked on around 400 documentaries till date, including industrial films and a feature film as well.

His recent documentary, Kovil Kodai – The Umbrella Of The Gods, is a huge success and has attracted a lot of attention. In Chennai, woven umbrellas of vibrant colors are an important part of the religious traditions. Kovil Kodai is the act of carrying umbrellas by devotees to protect the deity from sunshine and rainfall. It is also considered as a symbolic way to pay respect to the Gods.

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“These umbrellas are made by about 12 Saurashtrian families who live in Chintadripet,” Kumar told Times of India, who uses his own funds to make the films that range from a few minutes to half an hour. “The name of the area is derived from “Chinatari pettai”, when the British East India Company decided to create a facility to supply England with woven cloth at a controlled price. The weavers were settled in the area,” he says.

These families are descendants of the migrants from Saurashtra. Even though each family owns different companies, they all work together in unity to create around 3,000 umbrellas every year. Each umbrella is around 4.5 feet to 18 feet, and ranges from 3,000 to 6,000 INR, depending on the requirements. These umbrellas have assumed such an important role in performing rituals, that no deity is taken out of the temple without their shade. Each god is believed to be suited a particular color palette. For example, the umbrellas for Vishnua are only white and brown, while the ones used for Shiva are multicolored.

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Ram Kumar enjoys capturing these emotions and candid moments to help portray Chennai’s culture. The documentary was shot over a period of 24 hours with the willingness of the families, which made Kumar’s work easier.  Kovil Kodai – the Umbrella of the Gods will be screened followed by a talk on temple umbrellas by C N Magesh at Apparao Galleries, Nungambakkam on 18th June.

-written by Saurabh Bodas, an intern at NewsGram. Twitter Handle: @saurabhbodas96

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Walk of Pride: Along with 100 other villages, Koverapalem Village of Andhra Pradesh is also Free from Open Defecation

Similar projects are already underway in 250 more villages in Andhra Pradesh to free the state from defecation

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Defecation in India. Image source: www.m1key.me
  • Koverapalem became one of the 100 villages to get toilets for all residents, effectively called defecation free
  • Chief Guest Mr. Jawahar Reddy thanked locals for showing active participation in this project
  • Collector Janaki mentioned that inspired by the residents of this village, 250 other villages were already undergoing similar projects

When India is losing its war on defecation, Koverapalem village in Nellore, Andhra Pradesh becomes an example of how the locals of the village felt accountable to counter the issue. Koverapalem village became one of the 100 villages and habitations in the district that had got toilets for all their residents under the Atma Gouravam and the Swachh Bharat programs.

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Panchayat Raj Principal Secretary Jawahar Reddy and District Collector for Nellore, M. Janaki accompanied by a host of officials participated in the Walk of Pride event. Residents of Koverapalem village joined the Panchayat which took place on Tuesday, June 14, in TP Gudur Mandal limit. This move was also widely appreciated by the youth and students, who raised slogans and held placards in support of the development activities in the village, said the Hindu report.

Koverapalem
Walk of Pride event. Image courtesy: The Hindu

According the report in Hindu, Mr. Jawahar Reddy had appeared as the chief guest for the celebratory event. He said that more than the support of the officials and the government, it was the active participation of the locals that helped achieve this prestigious status. He urged residents of other villages to follow in their footsteps for similar advancements in their homes.

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Reiterating what the chief guest said, Collector Janaki enthusiastically stated that this day would provide inspiration for other villages, and that similar projects were already underway in 250 other villages in the district.

-written by Saurabh Bodas, an intern at NewsGram. Twitter Handle: @saurabhbodas96

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3 responses to “Walk of Pride: Along with 100 other villages, Koverapalem Village of Andhra Pradesh is also Free from Open Defecation”

  1. When people unite for a cause,miracles happen. Its really something to be proud about! Well done, people of Koverapalem village!

  2. Defecation is very huge problem in India.And this small step by koverapalem people will bring a great result after sometime.

  3. Sanitation has always been a problem in India. When people from a small village can do it, there are many such villages to be inspired and to achieve what people of Koverapalem have done.

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How Malayalam Slang Words developed through Foreign Invasions

Words from foreign languages made their way into the local dialect through trade and colonial rule

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Malayalam
A signboard in Malayalam
  • Life in India has been influenced by European superpowers ever since the British Rule
  • Indian Leaders, understanding the importance of western education, helped in spreading western influence
  • Malayalam as a language has been greatly influenced by historical events revolving around foreign rule

Life in India has been highly influenced by the arrival and stay of foreign powers in every possible facet, and this is true with regard to India’s traditionally rich languages as well. Western culture and education was first adopted by great Indian leaders like Rabindranath Tagore, Swami Vivekananda and Ram Mohan Roy, who learnt to understand the base of western culture. The spread of western influence was facilitated by these Indian leaders themselves. While these leaders went on foreign voyages to teach the tenets of Hinduism, they happened to imbibe the spiritual values of the West as well. ”

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Mahatma Gandhi’s statement serves as a perennial source of inspiration. He writes, “I do not want my house to be walled on either side and my windows to be stuffed. I want the cultures of all lands to blow about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown away.”

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The first letter in Malayalam

Malayalam, a language native to Kerala, was one of the last languages to evolve in South India. This fact made it vulnerable to changes from external situations.

“Malayalam has a history of assimilating loanwords from various foreign tongues”, writes Anoop Sarkar at scroll.in. Kerala, the southern state of India, is thought to be the most influenced by western culture, as is evident in today’s local life being dwelt in that state. A few words that were coined this way in Malayalam only serve as an example of how the language was deeply impacted by foreigners.

OC (ഓസ്സി/ഓസ്സ്)

verb. to get something for free at someone’s else expense

This word is believed to be originated from the East India Company times, when there was a facility of sending out official parcels and letters without paying postage. These parcels would be stamped as ‘OCS’, which stood for ‘On Company Service’. The word must have descended into the local language and modified to OC. It is also prevalent in Tamil, and probably made its way into Malayalam through Tamil.

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Knappan (ക്ണാപ്പൻ)

noun. a good-for-nothing guy

Sir Arthur Rowland Knapp was a British officer of the Indian Civil Services, who served as the collector of the Malabar district of the Madras presidency. His inexperience and lack of knowledge about local customs resulted in most of his administrative reforms being unpopular and fruitless.

It is believed that even after he left from Malabar, Arthur Knapp’s name became synonymous with incompetence, consequently being adopted into Malayalam as Knappan. Though there are no officially documented records of this fact, it is widely believed to be true by literary experts.

Yemandan (യമണ്ടൻ)

adj. unusually huge and/or powerful

This Malayali word originated from from a German battleship named SMS Emden. Because of its military prowess, this ship proved to be a major contributor for the German Navy during World War I. During its war operations in the Bay of Bengal and later, in the Arabian Sea (close to the coast of Kerala), it was responsible for the destruction of many European military and merchant ships.

The main goal of this ship’s operation was to belittle the respect that Indians held for the British. The infamous bombardment of Madras was one of its worst attacks on the British colony. This event, which literally lit up the night sky with the sheer magnitude of the attack, was etched in the minds of the local people for years to come.

The word Yamandan, an adoption of the ship’s name, thus came into the local folklore as a superlative for something large and powerful.

KD (കേഡി)

noun. a bully or trouble maker

A minor criminal that has been caught with frequent offences is called as ‘Known Depradator’, or KD, in the Indian Penal code. Even to this date, most police stations are required to keep an account of all the KDs in their district.

-written by Saurabh Bodas. Saurabh is an intern at NewsGram.

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