A Tamil short epic, authored b
y N.R. Muruganathan, who is
years old now, introduces Nan jundapuram, a village,
mous for toddy with acres of
ts coconut groves. His descrip tion says that the fertile
lage provides work for bulls and plough throughout the year with the ‘wonder’ of river Noyyal flowing across it.
today it is an irony that Nanjundapuam is no more a
age, but a concrete jungle with a number of
ties, individual houses and
sy commercial establishments along its road.
Muruganathan, though wrote his
( Painter’s br
ush) and bagged a prize in
5, he set a part of its story in his native village
puram, as he had seen it while he was a boy.
“ I took my B.A in Tamil liter
ature from the Government Arts College. However, I did not s eek a job, and rather continue d our family’s occupation of a griculture at Nanjundapuram” s ays Muruganathan.
The author remembers a ten-yea
r period in the history of Coi mbatore, during which
s not a single drop of rain.
“ The city witnessed a great f
amine due to the failure of mo nsoon for a decade from 1961 -1971. Coimbatore wore an
rnal look with plants and tree s withering away. But, I saved many of the coconut and areca nut trees in my field, for my brother regularly provided so me water from his farmland
l to irrigate the plants”
Reminicing his student days, t
he octogenarian author informs that he was inspired by the T amil classes conducted by the legendary Tamil scholar and te acher Pulavar Sundararasanar while he studied at St. Michae l’s Higher Secondary School, a 300 year old heritage institution of Coimbatore.
A lover of writing and staging pl
ays in his earlier days, Murug anathan says:
“ I penned my first play on th
e title Puratchi Kanal in 1963 . It was staged at the movie h all Shanmuga, for the cinema w as also a venue for staging dr amas in the yesteryear Coimbat ore “
A few years ago, Muruganathan
had a road accident and was ho spitalised. He remembers that his friend’s son saw him lying in a pool of blood, took him in his car and rushed him to t he hospital.
“ Following the surgery, I had
been in coma for about forty five days. My wife Rajee, who is no more today, dedicated he rself by attending to me. She shed tears at my condition, la id her head on my feet and sle pt throughout the nights. One day in the morning, I felt that I got back my senses. I remember that the the first word I uttered was my wife’s name ‘ Rajee’ by calling her so” breaks down Muruganathan, who had married his beloved from a different caste after a romantic affair with her.
Thoorigai - In nutshell
Link to my article in The New Indian Express : http://epaper.newindianexpress.com/c/24096532