Thursday, November 24, 2016

2500 years old city found in Tamilnadu .. Keezhadi village near Madurai

The ASI’s excavations at Keezhadi near Madurai, its largest in Tamil Nadu, have unearthed hard evidence of the city’s existence in the Sangam Age of the Early Historic period. By T.S. SUBRAMANIAN

At Keezhadi, a village not far from the southern bank of the Vaigai river near Madurai, the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) is undertaking a massive excavation, possibly its biggest to date in Tamil Nadu. Already 42 trenches have been dug in two locations in a coconut grove at a place called Pallichandai Thidal in the village. K. Amarnath Ramakrishna, Superintending Archaeologist, ASI’s Excavation Branch VI, Bengaluru, is leading the excavation, which has thrown up quite a few surprises and is attracting many visitors, among them schoolchildren and tourists. Amarnath takes time off to explain to visitors the significance of the finds. One such is a “deep terracotta ring well with 13 rings” that promises to go down further. “Here we have a ring well in association with a structure built of big-sized bricks. This is a peculiarity,” he tells a few visiting archaeology buffs. He contrasts this with the ring well excavated at Vasavasamudram near Kalpakkam (near Chennai), which stood independent of any other structure. The same is the case at Arikkamedu near Puducherry, he adds.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Interfaith Coalition Clashes With Hindu Groups Over Portrayal of India in California Textbooks

A coalition of 24 organizations representing several South Asian cultures clashed with Indian American organizations representing traditional Hindu values at a May 19 hearing in Sacramento, Calif., before the Instructional Quality Commission, which is aiming to determine how India and the Indian subcontinent should be portrayed in the state’s elementary school textbooks.
The IQC — an advisory body to the California State Board of Education — has been grappling with the issue for over a year, sorting through differing missives from the Hindu American Foundation, the Hindu Education Foundation and the Uberoi Foundation, which contrast widely with views from the coalition, known as South Asian Histories For All and the South Asian Faculty Group, which represents academicians immersed in South Asian studies at universities across the state.
After the hearing, the Commission approved a new framework which will not replace mentions of India with South Asia in history and social science textbooks for pre-1947 references. It also agreed to replace the word "untouchable" with "Dalit,” as requested by many Dalits who testified during the hearing. The recommendations of the IQC will come up for final approval by the State Board of Education, at hearings on July 13-14.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Modiji, you need to speak your mind on the future of pluralism: Carnatic singer TM Krishna

Honourable Narendra Modi-ji As I penned this piece, I heard of your words at a rally in Bihar, instead of deterring me from writing to you, it has only further strengthened my resolve that this needs to be said. Over the last week or more we have witnessed what can only be described as the molestation of a human tragedy, the perpetrators of this crime being politicians coloured green, saffron and the various shades of every other colour, all no less sullied. As individuals, partymen, members of the ruling class and the opposition benches they have vulgarised the very soul of compassion and empathy. This is for certain not a new phenomenon and only another sign of who we are, or may be we have always been this way!