Balele Kodava Samaja resolution copy

By P.T. Bopanna

The Balele Kodava Samaja in Kodagu (Coorg) district in Karnataka seems to have got its priorities mixed up. The Samaja recently passed a resolution (in picture) not to rent their premises for weddings to Kodavas (Coorgs) who marry outside the community.

The need of the hour is to chalk out measures to bring better understanding and bonding within the community.

The priority of the Kodava Samajas should be to unite the community, rather than take ‘regressive’ measures to alienate the community.

Disallowing wedding celebrations in the Samaja premises to those marrying outside the community is a regressive move that does not stand the scrutiny of law.

The purpose of a Kodava Samaja is to promote the wellbeing of the Kodavas and to strengthen Kodavaama (Kodava culture).

Every Kodava Samaja should introspect as to what it has done to promote Kodava culture. From this yardstick, every Samaja fails because they have done very little to promote and protect Kodava culture. The Samajas are nothing but glorified wedding halls.

Choosing a life partner is the choice of individuals and these Samajas have no business to question the choice. Instead, the Samajas should have programmes to bring together the members of the community and promote bonding. This in turn would reduce the chances of people marrying outside the community.

Some of the ill-informed people in the Kodava community take great pride in showing off their Taliban mind-set, especially in their social media posts.

The time has come for members of the community to ask the Samajas to explain what they have done for promoting Kodava culture and to safeguard the interests of the community.

Some of these busybodies running the affairs of the Kodava Samajas need to visit the Devaiah Memorial Preparatory School at Bittangala to find out how the children are being taught Kodava aat (dance) paat (song).

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3 Responses

  1. M U Appayya says:

    Very well written, Mr Bopanna, I totally agree with your view.
    Everywhere I keep people saying “we are kodavas, we are special”. If we really so special, why don’t we respect our culture and values, the sacrifices and teachings of our ancestors?

    I feel these wise parents should teach their kids some good values, and the meaning of marriage. These are the same people who give sermons when others’ kids get married outside the community! Do their children respect their kodava spouses ? Will they stand for what is right?

    Time to practice what we preach. Imbibe good values in our children first, for a better kodava culture tomorrow, before blindly passing meaningless orders! You can’t dictate any individual’s personal preference about marriage, religion etc.

  2. Nithin Nachappa says:

    The problem is, logical reasoning like “law of averages” doesn’t work anymore. Do our community have any scientific/logical reasoning left?? The older living generation is stuck in casteist Hindu identity, and the younger struck in absurd modernity which include abusing alcohol, drugs, etc. Only common thing left between them is bragging what is kodava culture, which isn’t true. And history becomes openions, and not facts. Our forefathers and foremothers were tolerant, which we are not. We don’t even wear our kodava attire, authentic anymore. Most of our kids speak English as mother tongue and kodava as secondary language. Worshipping guru karna is yearly affair now and Hindu gods daily. Most of us don’t know any kodava dances such as kolata, bolkatu, ummathate, etc. Love and respect for forests are done and dusted. Our forests/estates are left with foreign invasive trees such as silver Oak, Nilgiri trees, etc. This list keeps going.

  3. Ashok says:

    We have to respect our culture and values left behind by our elders.

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