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Old January 8th, 2012, 06:17 AM   #61
Madurai gilli
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Originally Posted by kumaran_supm View Post
Just now i noticed this thread. I feel very happy and proud of Madurai. Thanks for the efforts and contributions by our forumers. I have forwarded this link as many to my friends and collegues. My Intention is to bring more foreign as well as local tourist here.
Thanks for doing that Kumaran...Looking forward for your contribution as well as your friends' to this thread..
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Old January 9th, 2012, 05:04 AM   #62
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Poetry in stone

Frontline, Volume 26 - Issue 08 :: Apr. 11-24, 2009


The wonders of the Meenakshi-Sundareswarar temple in Madurai, after its recent renovation.



WE are standing on the eastern side of the Meenakshi-Sundareswarar temple in Madurai, Tamil Nadu, chosen on March 30 as one of the “Seven Wonders of India” by NDTV through a poll it conducted as part of the Union Tourism Ministry’s “Incredible India” campaign. Although it is only around 9 a.m., business has already picked up, with devotees and Indian and foreign tourists bargaining with shopkeepers in the temple’s pudu mandapa (new hall). Even as we scan the tall, stupendous base of the unfinished Raya gopuram in front of us, with its ornate thoranas, elegant carvings, sculptures of dancing damsels, lion-based pilasters and niches, the eyes of the scholar-leader of our team light up. He darts forward, removes the wooden planks propped up on the base and reveals a beautiful stone sculpture of Tirumalai Nayak (A.D. 1623 to 1659), the ruler of Madurai who contributed to the temple’s expansion.

A few steps away, we are on Ezhu Kadal Street, one of the oldest streets in Madurai. To our disappointment, the sacred tank, after which the street is named, is no longer there. A big multi-storeyed shopping complex has taken its place. “I have seen the tank brimming with water in the early 1980s,” says K. Ganesan, Special News Photographer, The Hindu/Frontline.

Ezhu Kadal (Seven Seas) has a 500-year history behind it. An inscription that used to be at the spot referred to Saluvanarasa Nayak, an officer of the Vijayanagar emperor who excavated the tank in 1516 to collect “merit” for the emperor Krishnadevaraya. Opposite the multi-storeyed shopping complex is a small temple dedicated to Kanchanamala, mother of Meenakshi. According to legend, Sundareswarar, Meenakshi’s consort, made the seven seas converge in Madurai to fulfil Kanchanamala’s wish to bathe in the seven seas of the world. Back in the pudu mandapa built by Tirumalai Nayak, a world of poetry in stone awaits us. It is full of sculptures of indescribable beauty: Siva as “Ekapadamurthy”, “Gajasamharamurthy”, and “Ravana anugrahamurthy”; Siva performing the “Urthava thandava” dance; Kali; prancing yalis; warriors on horses; mythical animals; and so on. There are also sculptures depicting scenes from Siva Lila (Tiruvilayadal Puranam in Tamil), which took place in Madurai – Siva converting foxes into horses, a stone-elephant coming alive to eat sugarcane, Siva feeding milk to a piglet, Siva preaching to a black sparrow, and so on.


The gargantuan base of the unfinished Raya gopuram (in the foreground), the pudu mandapa, and the raja gopuram at the eastern side of the temple.


Another facet of the pudu mandapa emerges as a temple employee opens the gates and leads us into its central nave. Standing on huge pillars on either side of the imposing corridor are majestic portrait sculptures of 10 rulers of the Madurai Nayak dynasty – from Viswanatha Nayak, the progenitor of the dynasty, to Tirumalai Nayak with his two wives.

The real beauty of the Meenakshi-Sundareswarar temple is emerging before the viewer’s eyes, thanks to the temple administration’s efforts to give a facelift to the historic site on the occasion of the khumbhabhishekam, held on April 8. The 15-acre (one acre is 0.4 hectare) temple complex has been bustling with activity. From September 2007, several hundred artisans, artists, sthapathis and masons have been working to refurbish the complex. Load-bearing granite beams and roof slabs that had developed cracks have been replaced with new architectural members. The hideous metal cladding that obscured the view of the geometrical and floral designs of the pillars have been removed. The vimana of the sanctum sanctorum of the shrine of Meenakashi has been gold-plated now. About 30 kilograms of pure gold was converted into sheets to cover it.

Karumuttu T. Kannan, Chairman, Board of Trustees of the temple, called it a “challenge” to replace the four beams and 87 roof slabs with new members. Kannan said: “It was not easy to take them out because these structures were several centuries old and their stability was involved.” The metal props that supported the structure in the south-east corner of the Meenakshi shrine’s sanctum sanctorum were replaced with pillars. A team of sthapathis sculpted these pillars with carvings.

Now the temple premises is a riot of polychromatic colours. The 12 gopurams, including the four majestic raja gopurams with hundreds of stucco sculptures, painted in multicolours, glow in the sun. Mandapas with pillars and elegant sculptures have received a generous coat of polyurethane, which K. Rajanayagam, temple executive officer, claimed was a “preservative”. Panels of small sculptures that run for several hundred metres above the capitals of pillars dazzle with enamel paint. Rajanayagam said the attempt was to restore the temple’s originality “as per the principles of agama”.

The temple complex stands in the heart of Madurai town, on the banks of the Vaigai river. Its architecture is marvellous, with inner and outer prakaras running around the two sanctum sanctorums. On the four sides of the complex are streets that run parallel to each other, in the form of a square within a square – a testimony to the excellent town-planning of those early days. The temple’s origin, growth and development are organically linked to those of the town.

In her book Madurai Through the Ages: From the earliest times to 1801 A.D., D. Devakunjari says, “Whether as a temple city or a capital city, the history of Madurai is distinct from that of other cities. Politically, Madurai was the capital of a single dynasty, the Pandyas, who ruled continuously as far as is known from the early years of Christianity down to the 14th century. This fact alone, more than anything else, is enough to gain for Madurai a unique place. Even after the Pandyas, Madurai continued as the capital of some dynasty or the other for four centuries more. It has, therefore, had a continuous history as a political capital for eighteen centuries.”


The sculpture depicting the wedding of Meenakshi to Sundareswarar, at the pudu mandapa of the temple.

In this book, published in 1979 by the Society for Archaeological, Historical and Epigraphical Research, Chennai, the late Devakunjari says: “The history of Madurai as a religious centre goes back to remote times when the temple, one of its oldest institutions, has had a coeval history with those of the rulers and remains as important as ever even after the rulers have disappeared. The Madurai temple is not only of hoary antiquity but possesses an entire purana of its own, relating to the lilas of Sundareswarar, the deity of Madurai. This purana, known as Halasya Mahatmya or Tiruvilayaidal in Tamil, narrates the 64 lilas performed by God.”

The temple has four raja gopurams, on the east, the west, the south and the north. Each gopuram is nine-storeys tall. Besides these, there are eight gopurams of which two are vimanas. Inside the temple is the Golden Lotus Tank, which unfortunately was cemented up a few years ago.

As Devakunjari says, the raja gopurams have “a singular beauty and grace of their own. Many temple gopuras…are either too wide or too narrow in proportion to their height. The builders of the Madurai temple had a fine sense of artistry and the towering outer gopuras are standing monuments to their genius.” Each gopuram teems with hundreds of stucco figures of the deities in the Hindu pantheon, the various forms of Siva and his lilas.


A VIEW OF the 1,000-pillared mandapa with the image of Nataraja at the centre.


The east gopuram was built by Jatavarman Sundara Pandyan in the 13th century and is the oldest of the four. At its base are two Tamil inscriptions, which refer to the gopuram as “Sundarapandya Tirugopuram” and “Avanivendaraman Tirugopuram” (the king who conquered the world).

The west gopuram was built by Parakrama Pandya in A.D. 1323.

The 161-foot (49.1 m) south gopuram is the tallest of the four. It is a magnificent structure with late Vijayanagar and early Madurai Nayak characteristics. The squatting lions on the wall pilasters are typical of the Vijayanagar period. It was built by Siramalai Sevvandi in A.D. 1478. “Structurally,” says Devakunjari, it is “one of the most beautiful. The two tiers of its stone base are well proportioned to each other and are of an imposing appearance…. The brick structure is of singular beauty though myriads of stucco figures hide its architectural construction. The sloping edge has a more concave sweeping curve than in the other three gopuras. This gives it a peculiar elegance which is admirable.”


[IMG]The sculpture of Parvati riding a peacock.[/IMG]


The north gopuram was built by Krishnappa Nayaka (A.D. 1595-1601).

Another wonder is the unfinished Raya gopuram, with its gargantuan base: 200 feet by 120 ft (61 metres by 36.6 m). Devakunjari says: “It is a stupendous structure and if it had been completed, it would have been one of the biggest gopuras in South India. The building owes its origin to Tirumala Nayaka, who is also reported to have built similar unfinished gopuras in numerous other centres in South India. The monolithic pillars of Raya gopuram are over 50 feet high and mark a high degree of proficiency which the Dravidian stone masons attained.”

As the level of the road around the Raya gopuram has risen by 10 ft (3 m), the tall stone carvings of dancing damsels surrounded by ornate creepers are hidden from our view. With “commerce settling on every tree”, to borrow a phrase from Ananda Coomaraswamy, textile shops have taken over the base of the Raya gopuram.

Besides the gopurams, what amazes a visitor are the dozen mandapas built by Vijayanagar rulers and the Madurai Nayaks – the pudu mandapa, the Nagara mandapa, the 1,000-pillared mandapa, the Rani Mangammal mandapa, the Ashta Sakthi mandapa, the Kambathadi mandapa, the Meenakshi Nayak mandapa, the Kilikatti mandapa, and so on. With massive pillars and secular and religious sculptures, they are amazing feats of workmanship. The most outstanding one is the 1,000-pillared mandapa, built in the 16th century by Ariyanatha Mudali, “the great general and Minister” of the first three Nayaks of Madurai – Viswanatha Nayak, Kumara Krishnappa Nayak and Veerappa Nayak.

At its centre is a big image of Nataraja, dancing on a kurma peetam, surrounded by pillars with splendorous sculptures. On the base of the mandapa are long panels of sculptures of warriors on horses, battle scenes, Nataraja, Kali, Dakshinamurthy, Arjuna’s penance, and so on. On either side of the entrance there are tall, elegant sculptures of Chandramathi holding her infant in her hands, a gypsy woman (kurathi in Tamil) with one child on one of her shoulders, another child clinging to her breast and a third walking beside her. The adjacent sculpture is that of a gypsy man (kurvan) with his gear.

An outstanding sculpture inside is that of an elegant-looking “virali” woman, with an aristocratic mien, a sharp nose and a sensuous body, wearing a pleated sari and huge earrings. The sculptor has paid so much attention to detail that even the strands of her coiffured hair can be seen.




There is also a fantastic sculpture of Arjuna as a eunuch teaching dance to Uthirai, whose sculpture is on the opposite side. In his eunuch form, Arjuna is shown with a big, hanging moustache, big breasts, tall headgear, ornamental earrings and a waistband. The sculpture of Uthirai is equally arresting. There are also sculptures of Nagaraja, Siva as Bhiskhadana, Siva beheading Dakshan, Siva giving a reprieve to Dakshan with a ram head and a ram-headed Dakshan worshipping Siva. A puzzling carving on a pillar shows three men with a single torso, one head and four legs.

The 1,000-pillared mandapa also has bronzes of Nataraja, various forms of Siva, Ambica and Sivagami and minute ivory carvings of amorous couples, Yavana women, Tirumalai Nayak, prancing yalis, decorated hand fans with blades made of thin ivory, and so on. There is a massive door of the 17th century, which stood at the entrance to the east gopuram. The door, 9.38 m high and 2.14 m wide, has hundreds of superb carvings.





The vimana of Sundareswarar, called Indira Vimana, is unique. It is supported by sculptures of eight massive elephants, called ashtadigh gajas, standing and facing in eight different directions. One of them is Iravatham, the elephant-vehicle of Indra. “No other temple in Tamil Nadu has this type of architecture, where ashtadigh gajas are supporting the vimana,” said K. Sridharan, retired Superintending Archaeologist, Tamil Nadu Archaeology Department. The Indra Vimana was built by Viswanathan Nayak.

Inscriptions

The temple is full of inscriptions – on the prakara walls, on the gopurams, on the wall abutting the steps leading to the Golden Lotus Tank and even on the two giant, arched brass lamps that rise to a height of more than 25 ft (7.6 m). Just a month ago, interesting inscriptions were discovered on both lamps. An inscription on one of the lamps says it was erected in 1819 by Syed Ismail, the tahsildar of Madurai Madakulam, on the orders of Collector Major Ross Pieter.




The inscription on the other lamp refers to it as “Makara Thorana Tiruvasi” and says it was erected on November 21, 1898, by Bangaru Tirumalai Swamy Nayak on the orders by Muthu Vijaya Raghunatha Duraisingam alias Gowri Vallabha Devar, who was a zamindar of Sivagangai. There are two inscriptions on the talas for the dance of Nataraja. They are titled “Nardhana tala” and “Saptha suzhadhi tala”. There are several inscriptions in Telugu and Tamil.

There is a wealth of murals in Rani Mangammal mandapa, the kalyana mandapa and the unjal (swing) mandapa. The murals on the ceiling of Rani Mangamma mandapa give one an insight into an important custom of the Madurai Nayaks: the Nayak rulers giving their royal sceptre to Meenakshi and receiving it from her every year. Another interesting mural shows Rani Mangammal along with her grandson, Vijayaranga Chokkanatha Nayak, watching the wedding of Meenakshi to Sundareswarar. Other murals portray various forms of Siva and Meenakshi battling the “Dighbalas”. These murals, belonging to the 17th century, have label inscriptions in Telugu and Tamil.





Arvind Kumar, coordinator, INTACH (Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage), whose team is conserving these murals, said, “We are treating these murals as antique paintings. There is no repainting or recreation. It is scientific conservation.”

According to S. Ramachandran, retired Senior Epigraphist, Tamil Nadu Archaeology Department, Madurai was called “Madirai” during the pre-Christian era and up to 10th century A.D. The earliest references to Madurai occurred in the Tamil-Brahmi inscriptions of the second century B.C., found at Mettupatti and Azhagarmalai, near Madurai. Inscriptions in these places refer to a village elder named Visuvan, a goldsmith, a Jain monk and a salt trader as belonging to “Madirai”.

Even Mathura, in present-day Uttar Pradesh, was originally known as Mathira, said Ramachandran. It was from the 10th/11th century A.D. that Madirai came to be called Madurai.


THE EXQUISITE SCULPTURE of the 10-headed Ravana Anugrahamurthy at the pudu mandapa.



The Meenakshi temple dates back to 1,800 years, says V. Vedachalam, retired Senior Epigraphist, Tamil Nadu Archaeology Department, in his article titled “Inscriptions in Meenakshi-Sundareswarar temple”, published in the volume brought out on the occasion of the kumbhabhishekam. The Kumbhabhishekam Malar 2009 is a treasure of information on the temple. It runs to 400 pages with 100 pages of illustrations. The volume’s editors are M. Arunagiri, Vedachalam, Devendra Bhoopathy, and L. Manivannan and its assistant editors are Dr. S. Kumaresamoorthy and T. Vijaya Raghunathan. The entire volume has no advertisements.

The Tamil literary works Purananuru and Madurai Kanchi of the Sangam age (third century B.C. to third century A.D.) refer to the temple, and Paripadal of the post-Sangam age talks about how the town came up with the temple at its centre. “While Madurai was earlier a political capital, it is Paripadal which makes the first reference to the town being a religious centre,” says Vedachalam.





Although several dynasties contributed to the temple’s development, “as far as the inscriptions are concerned, only those from the end of the 12th century A.D. are available in the temple. It is a big surprise how the Vattelettu inscriptions of the early Pandyas and the Chola inscriptions are not available in the temple. Although no inscriptions of this period are available, the fact remains that the temple flourished during the rule of the early Pandyas and the Cholas,” asserts Vedachalam in his article.

Right from the seventh century A.D., the temple has witnessed a remarkable growth during the rule of early Pandyas, the Cholas, the medieval Pandyas, the later Pandyas, the Vijayanagar kings, Vanadirayars (the chieftains of the Vijayanagar rulers), the Madurai Nayaks and the British rule. It was during the rule of the Vijayanagar kings and the Madurai Nayaks that the temple expanded a great deal and reached the status of a huge temple complex that it is today.

Did the Vijayanagar rulers and the Madurai Nayaks, who expanded the temple a great deal, throw away the inscriptions in the process of expansion? “We do not know,” he says
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Old January 9th, 2012, 05:05 AM   #63
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Unique in its own way

The Hindu, Aug 04, 2007


Close to heart Replete with history


Stumble upon any stone, pillar or a statue and it is bound to hide some history and interesting stories. True to its name — the Athens of the East — the Temple City has many unique features especially with regard to temples. They contribu te immeasurably to the city’s rich cultural heritage. But who has the record and will remind us of the long-forgotten facts that are slowly fading into oblivion. One such place is ‘Mottai Vinayagar Temple on East Masi Street.’

Lord Ganesha is always identified with elephant-head and trunk. But, here the deity at the temple has no head, hands or legs.

Popularly known as ‘Mottai Vinayagar,’ its history, though not documented, is believed to belong to the period of King Chandrasekera Pandyan in 1530 AD.

Says R. Sundaravel, former secretary of the Temple Governing Committee, “Veerasekara Cholan waged a battle against King Chandrasekera Pandyan, who sought the help of King of Vijayanagar Kingdom.

Nayak rule

Following which, Nagama Nayak came down to the city and established his rule here. Disappointed, the Pandya King again sought the help of Vijayanagar King, who again sent Viswanatha Nayak to arrest his father Nagama Nayak in Madurai.

But later looking at the sorry state of the country, Viswanatha Nayak declared himself king the Madurai country and imposed ‘deshaprashtam’ (they should not mingle with people and suffered ostracism) on the Pandya king and his family members, Mr. Sundaravel says.

Moving far and wide, the members of the community (later known as Nadars meaning people who ruled the country) collected a tax called ‘magamai’ from the community and established their own educational institutions and temples as they were not allowed to enter the common temple, he claims.

Similarly, the community from other parts of the southern districts came to Madurai to sell its produce and products. Meanwhile to escape from the thieves, the traders built ‘pettai’ (‘keezha pettai’ near the temple and ‘mela pettai’ or ‘veli pettai’ near old Chokkanathar Temple) and installed the statue of Vinayagar in 1700 AD.

Legendary characters

The 16-foot structure that served as the wall (kottai suvar) for the ‘pettai’ still stands tall, trumpeting its proud history, Mr. Sundaravel says.

The Archaeological Officer, C. Santhalingam, says that King Chandrasekera Pandyan and Veerasekara Cholan might be legendary characters or little chieftains as there is no proper record for their presence. Mr. Santhalingam says that Nagama Nayak was sent to control the riots between Madurai and Tirunelveli. Later, Viswanatha Nayak established the rule with the consent of Vijayanagar. When Nayaks established rule in Madurai, Pandya king and his kin left the kingdom and joined their relatives in Kayatharu, Tenkasi and Tirunelveli.

All auspicious events begin with an invocation to this deity at Mottai Vinayagar Temple. At the commencement of all rituals that mark the life of a Hindu from birth to death, it is the worship of Ganesha that precedes the ceremony, says C. Chellaih, a 77-year-old devotee, who dares not miss a visit whenever he happens to cross the Street. Recently, the temple authorities have removed the hundi of the temple and people can perform puja all by themselves.
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Old January 16th, 2012, 08:40 AM   #64
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Good info, really Gilli. COuld I get more info related to the TVS transport/ others in Madurai. Old Vintage photos, if available, are more use.
The Madurai based BUsiness conglomerate has turned 100 years of business this 2012, and am planning for a presentation on the group.

Thanks in advance
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Old January 16th, 2012, 04:16 PM   #65
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Dear MG,

Wonderful photos...
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Old January 17th, 2012, 12:25 PM   #66
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Thanks Saileshmurali. Please Look at the Madurai Industries & Development thread for more info on TVS Group industries in Madurai.

We, Madurai SSC-ians wish TVS Groups, the all Success & grow further high and bring many new Industries to their native Madurai & its surrounding region.

Wish you all the best for your presentation..!!
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Old January 17th, 2012, 01:07 PM   #67
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TVS Group - 60 Years of Business

Just four years away from hitting a century and into its fourth generation, TVS manages 33 companies under one umbrella. It has a decentralised set-up but centralised unity



It was 1929 and names such as Ford and General Motors were already a part of American lives. Cars in pre-Independent India were rare but they were slowly getting a look in. It wasn’t as if India didn’t have a market for them—zamindars and government officials had the money. But they seemed to prefer the good-old horse cart to a new technology about which they knew a zilch. Around this time, General Motors chose a south Indian company as its franchisee. It is said that the company owner had a son who had an ingenious way of inducing the rich to buy his cars—TS Duraisamy would visit the wealthy in an imported car, leave that and the driver behind and return in the host’s horse-cart. Duraisamy would pay a visit back in a week or so, by which time his host would have got used to the comfort and the status that the car gave him. At once, he would become Duraisamy’s customer.

When the General Motors franchise came about, Duraisamy’s father, TV Sundram Iyengar, had already clocked 18 years in business. Though Sundram Iyengar did become the ‘English-language lawyer’ that his father always wanted him to be, he dumped two cushy jobs (in Railways and a bank) on the way to realising his passion—business. In 1911, he started off with a bus service in the southern temple town of Madurai.

Since then, and over the next 96 years, the group has managed to get into almost everything related to the automobile sector, including finance, insurance, manufacture of two-wheelers, tyres and components. The group has managed to run 33 companies that account for a combined turnover of nearly $3 billion.

That was not all, the group had shown that it could also adapt to a globalised marketplace. And it even survived a few failed joint ventures. But more importantly, just four years away from a century and into its fourth generation, the business family has managed to stick together. The group refused to talk to Outlook Business for this story.

The Four Families

What started as a single man’s passion soon became the business of a family. Sundram Iyengar had five sons and three daughters, and in his patriarchal Tamil Brahmin family all male members got into the business. With Duraisamy’s early death, four other sons—TS Rajam, TS Santhanam, TS Srinivasan and TS Krishna—became an integral part of the business and ever since there have been four largely distinct branches that, however, have worked under the TVS umbrella. Broadly, today, Rajam’s grandchildren manage the holding company TV Sundram Iyengar & Sons; Santhanam’s sons run Sundaram Finance and Wheels India; Srinivasan’s sons are in charge of TVS Motor Company and TVS Electronics; and Krishna’s sons handle Sundram Fasteners and Sundaram Brake Linings.

The holding company, TV Sundram Iyengar & Sons, has stakes directly or indirectly in companies belonging to the four branches, which are free to chalk out independent strategies. So, even though Venu Srinivasan sits on the board of Sundram Fasteners, it’s its Chairman and Managing Director Suresh Krishna who calls the shots.

"The TVS family gives enough space to its members," says Dr Kavil Ramachandran, the Thomas Schmidheiny Fellow of Family Business at Hyderabad’s Indian School of Business. "Too much centralisation is dangerous is every sphere. That’s true for family businesses, too. TVS has a decentralised set-up but centralised unity."

Ramachandran reckons that some sort of centralisation is possible if there’s one great leader. But a more decentralised set-up is needed when there are many. He says, "family businesses such as this allow freedom but there are restrictions in using the name, linked to certain core values that might include quality parameters and how employees are taken care of."


The Passing Threat

Media reports recall how the only time family differences came out in the open was in the early 1990s when two groups belonging to different branches but having similar product lines faced a clash of interest. That sorted out, the family once again signalled that all was hunky-dory with it when all the four branch representatives came together in 2004 to announce the setting up of TVS Logistics.

Observers, however, say one of the branches—Santhanam Group—has tried to maintain its

distinct identity over the years. Santhanam started Sundaram Finance in 1954, and its current promoter holding of 38% is finely fragmented among 275 constituents (who are mostly individual stakeholders). One of the highest individual stakes among promoters is 2.5%, held by India Motor Parts & Accessories (where TV Sundram Iyengar & Sons holds just over 20% stake). In comparison, the holding company, along with other group units, has a far higher stake and, thus, a far greater grip on companies such as TVS Motor and Sundram Fasteners. For instance, TV Sundram Iyengar & Sons alone has a direct 25% stake in Sundram Fasteners while the holding company, along with group investment companies, has an 80% stake in Sundaram-Clayton, which directly and indirectly holds a 56% stake in TVS Motor.

Why They Tick

One reason why TVS as a group has been largely successful is believed to be its judicious use of capital. "If a TVS company, say, has Rs 25 crore as extra resources and it needs to expand, it would use Rs 20 crore while some others in the same situation would leverage it to Rs 40 crore," says a Chennai-based investment banker who tracked the group over the years.

"They have been conservative in a positive sense and disciplined," he says, pointing out how some group companies have largely used bonus issues as a way to increase paid-up capital after once going to the market.

As far as manufacturing goes, the group has largely been able to bring quality and efficiency, and the five Deming awards (a Japanese recognition of quality) are proof of that. "The group stands out for its exemplary manufacturing competencies and quality standards, which would be benchmarked against global standards," says the investment banker.

Its entrepreneurship model could mean that subsidiary firms of the earlier generation may serve as parents of nextgen’s newer companies

This, in turn, has helped the group tap global clients. Sundram Fasteners, for instance, gets nearly a third of its revenues from exports. Quality and investment in technology also helped TVS Motor emerge a winner with the Victor brand motorcycle, after its marriage with Suzuki ended.

On the personnel front, the group seems to have put behind the era of labour problems and, according to someone who worked in a group company for over three decades, there is a great deal of merit-based assessment of employees.


From Here To...

ISB’s Ramachandran believes that succession in groups such as TVS is well laid out. "In many family groups, succession is a given. But in groups such as Murugappa (another Chennai-based group) and TVS, the successive generations are groomed and prepared well so that they can join the management. Family values make sure they are in a position to command respect, not demand respect."

In a rare interview to a media house in 1999, K Mahesh, son of TS Krishna, recalled how he had to work his way up the ladder before he could head Sundaram Brake Linings.

His son, Krishna Mahesh joined the company as its Executive Director a couple of years back. But it wasn’t before equipping himself academically, including an MBA from Harvard, as also working in companies such as McKinsey and Toyota Motor.

Industry watchers say the entrepreneurship model could mean the subsidiary companies of the earlier generation could serve as the parents of newer companies that could be floated by the upcoming generation. There’s already the example of Sundaram Clayton, which was, among other companies, the parent of TVS Investments. In turn, TVS Investments floated TVS Electronics. And now TVS Electronics owns Sravaana Properties. The next-gen is ready .

(With inputs from KS Vasanth)

Last edited by kannan infratech; January 17th, 2012 at 01:14 PM.
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Old January 17th, 2012, 01:14 PM   #68
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TVS Group Companies



MANUFACTURING
Axles India Limited
Brakes India Limited
India Nippon Electricals Limited
Irizar TVS (P) Ltd
Lucas-TVS Limited
Lakshmi Auto Components Limited
Sundaram Dynacast Limited
Sundaram-Brake Linings Limited
Sundaram-Clayton Limited
Sundram Fasteners Limited
Sundaram Industries Limited
Sundaram Textiles Limited
TVS Automotive Europe Limited
TVS Cherry Limited
TVS Interconnect Systems Limited
TVS Electronics Limited
TVS Lanka Limited
TVS Srichakra Limited
TVS Motor Co. Ltd.
TVS Sewing Needles Limited
Transenergy Limited
Torsion Products Limited
Turbo Energy Private Limited
Wheels India Limited

TRADING AND SERVICES
T V Sundram Iyengar & Sons Limited
Madras Auto Service
Harita Finance Ltd
India Motor Parts & Accessories Limited
Lucas Indian Service
Sundaram Finance Limited
Sundaram Motors
Southern Roadways Limited
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Old January 17th, 2012, 01:18 PM   #69
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M.S.S,T.M.S,Madurai Somu,Madurai N.Krishnan,Mani Iyer,Seshagoplan,Ramanar,Rukmani
M.S.Subbulakshmi was born in Madurai on September 16,1916.Her mother Shanmugavadivu was a Veena vidwan in Madurai.MS was a child prodigy.Her first record was released when she was just 10 years old.She has acted in few Tamil films also in her younger days.She was married to Kalki Sadasivam who died in 1977.After her husband's death she stopped giving performances.Her famous renditions include Venkateswara suprabatham and Meera Bhajan.She was awarded Padma bushan,Padma Vibushan and later Bharat Ratna by the Indian government.AP governement has installed a bronze statue of MS in Tirupathi.She has also won the Ramson Magsay award.She died on December 11,2004

T.M.Soundararajan was born in Madurai on March 24,1923.He was ruling the Tamil film industry for over 40 years.He belongs to the Sourashtra community from Madurai.His devotional songs on Lord Muruga are popular.He has acted in few Tamil films also.He was awarded Padmshri by Indian Govenrment in 2003.In his formative years he imitated another star singer of yester years M.K.Thiagaraja Bagavathar.But later he developed a style of his own and many of the songs rendered by him are immortal and the favourites of many Tamil film goers.

Madurai Somu was was born in Madurai in 1919.He is the desciple of another famous carnatic musician Chittoor Subramanya pillai.Somu had an inimitable style of his own.He would render songs on Lord Muruga so emotionally and the audience would be spellbound on most of the occasions.His music career was started in 1934 at Tiruchendur.Hence he always had an emotional bonding with Lord Muruga.He was awarded Padmashri by the Indian government in 1976.Annamalai university conferred doctorate on him He died in the year 1989.

Madurai N.Krishnan was a desciple of Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar.He has composed many dance dramas for Tiruppavai and Divyaprabhandam.He got UNESCO award in 1970,Padmashri in 1992 and Padmabhushan in 2003.Indian Fine Arts Society also honoured him .He died in the year 2005 at Chennai.

Madurai Mani Iyer, carnatic Vocalist was born in 1925 at Madurai.He was a child prodigy.He had a unique style of singing.There was a huge fan following for his unque style of carnatic rendering.He died in the year 1968.

Madurai T. N. Sheshagopalan is a carnatic musician and a composer. He was born in 1948. He is also an Harikatha exponent.He is a science graduate.He has also acted in a music based Tamil film called 'Thodi Ragam' directed by another great musician Kunnakudi Vaithyanathan.He has travelled widely world over and has given concerts. His bhajans and abhangs are most popular among music fans.He is also good at playing veena and keyboard.He was a music professor in Madurai university for some time.

Bagawan Ramana Mahirishi was born in a village called Tiruchuzhi near Madurai in 1845. He and his brother moved to Madurai for school education.When he started feeling the 'Awakening' , he started visiting the nearby Meenakshi temple regularly. He was then living in an house in the lane just opposite to the South Tower of Meenakshi temple. In 1896 Ramanar left Madurai for Tiruvannamalai and the rest his history.

Rukmanidevi Arundale was born in Madurai in the year 1904.She was a Bhartanatyam dancer and choreographer.She was also a theosophist.She was awarded Padmabhushan in 1956.The magazine 'India Today' named her among the '100 people who shaped India'.She was a follower of Dr.Anne Besant.At Theosophical Society,she met British theosophist Dr.Arundale.Later She maried Arundale and travelled all over world on theosophical activities.She also established the dance school Kalakshetra at Adayar.She was also a Rajys Sabha member for one term.She died in the year 1986.

T.V.S,P.T.Rajan,De Morgan,Karumuthu,Jana Krishna,S.Pappiah,Indra Soundar
T.V.Sundaram Iyengar started the big business conglomerate TVS at Madurai in 1923.He made an humble begining with a fleet of lorries and buses in the name of Southern Roadways at Madurai.He later diversified and started rubber retreading and Sundaram Motors Limited.A host of ancillary automobile industries were also started by TVS later on.Today the TVS group includes the following companies.Lucas TVS,Sundram Claytons,Sundaram Finance,Axles India,Wheels India,Brakes India,Sundaram Fasteners,Turbo energy Limited,TVS Motor Company,Sundaram Brake Linings TVS logistics and TVS Electronics.These companies are now managed by his sons and grandsons.He died in the year 1955.

P.T.Rajan was born in 1892 in Madurai.He was educated at Cambridge and Oxford.He became a legislative council member as a Justice Party candidate.He held various portfolios and finally became the Chief Minister in 1933 of the then Madras Presidency.Later he became an MLA in 1952.He died in 1974.The present Panchaloga idol of LordI Iyyappan at Sabarimala in Kerala was installed by him in early 1950's.His son PTR Palanaivel Rajan was also a minister and speaker in the Tamilnadu government.

Augustus De Morgan ,the great Mathematician known for Morgan Algebra,Relation algebra and Universal Algebra was born in Madurai in 1806.He was born to Col.De Morgan of East India company.De Morgan is the grandson of Dodson who computed the anti logarothm tables.As a two month old baby Morgan lost vision in one eye and the family moved from Madurai to to London.His father and grand father were also born in India.He died in the year 1871.The headquarters of London Mathematical society is named after him as Morgan House.

Karumutu Thiagarajan Chettiar was born on 1893.He took active part in the freedom struggle.He was the founder of the Bank of Madura.He also owned 14 textile mills in Tamilnadu and Kerala.About 19 educational institutions were started by him.Thiagarajar Enginering College and Thiagarajar Arts and science College are among the premier educational institutions of Madurai.His son is the Madurai Industrialist and Meenakshi Temple Trustee Karumuthu T.Kannan.Mr.M.Thiagarajan MD,of Paramount Airways is the grandson of Karumuthu Thiagrajan Chettiar.He is the world's youngest Airline CEO.

Jana Krishnamurthy was born in Madurai in 1928.He was a successful practising lawyer in Madurai until 1965.In 1993 he moved to Delhi.He later became the National president of the BJP for a term during 2001-2002.He was also Union Law Miinister during the BJP rule.

Solmon Pappiah the famous 'Patti mandram Naduvar' (Debate Moderator) lives in Madurai.He himself is a well known debator,orator and was the former Professor and Head of the Department of Tamil in American College,Madurai.He was awarded Kalaimamani award by the Tamilnadu government.

Indira Soundararajan the famous Tamil Author was born in Madurai.He lives in Madurai.He is the author of many short stories,novels TV Serials and screenplays.His ghost Stories and supernatural thrillers are most popular amont Tamil readers.The popular TV serials Marmadesam and Rudraveenai were based on his stories.

TKS Brothers,Maniratnam,Vijayakanth,Vivek,Vadivelu,Bala,Ameer
The famous TKS brothers theater company was started in Madurai in 1925.TKS brothers were Sankaran,Muthuswamy,Shanmugam and Bagavathy.In 1950 they renamed their theater company as TKS Nataka Sabha.Those days male actors played female roles.TKS brothers introduced for the first time actresses for female roles.Many famed theater and film artists started their carrer in the TKS group.Veterans like NSK S.V.Sahasranamam S.V.Subbiah K.R.Ramaswamy A.P.Nagarajan S.S.Rajendran M.S.Draupati M.N.Rajam and Kamalahasan have all acted in TKS theatre group one time or other in the begining of their careers.

Director Maniratnam was born in Madurai in 1956.He shortened his full name Gopalaratrnam Subramaniam as Maniratnam after coming to films.He did his MBA in Jamanlal Bajaj Insittute.The management consultant turned Film director has many hit films to his credit.He married actress Suhasini in 1988.Healso runs a film production company called Madras Talkies.His films Roja and Bombay were nationally acclaimed.The Oscar winner A.R.Rehman made his debut to the film industry in Maniratnams film Roja.

Vijayakanth Tamil actor was born in Madurai in 1952.He has acted in over 150 Tamil films.He was also the Secretary of the 'Nadigar sangam' .He floated the political party DMDK in 2005 at Madurai.He was elected to TN Assembly from Virudaachalam constitiuency.He has huge fan following and in the political arena also he is considered as a force to reckon with.

Vivek the Tamil film actor and Comedian was born in Madurai in 1961.He is a commerce graduate from American college Madurai.He was awarded Padmashri by the government of India for the year 2008 for his contribution to arts.

Comedian Vadivelu was born in Madurai in 1960.Post 2000 he is one among the most popular Comedians in Tamil films and has made a niche for himself in Kollywood.

Director Bala is a Tamil graduate from Madurai American College.Though he has directed just 4 films so far, he has created a niche for himself among Tamil film goers.Out of the 4 films two of his films have won critical acclaims and awards.He was an understudy to reputed Director Balu Mahendra in his earlier days in film industry.

Tamil film Director Ameer was born in Madurai in 1966.His name is Ameer Sultan.For his film career he shortened his name as Ameer.He is also a producer,screen play writer and actor.He is a Tamil activist and was arrested for his protest against Sri Lankan genocide.

NMR subburaman was a renowned freedom fighter from Madurai.He is from the Madurai Sourashtra community.He is popularly known as Madurai Gandhi.He was the Madurai Municipal Chairman and also was elected to Loksabha from Madurai.He was instrumental in establishing Gandhi Museum in Madurai.Union government issued a commemorative stamp in his honour during the centenary year of NMR subburaman.
Famous sports Personalities from Madurai
A. Palanisamy (died November 12, 2007) was a volleyball player from Madurai. He represented India in the Asian Games in early 60's. He hailed from Kallampatti near Melur, in Madurai district. He was nicknamed as 'Black Panther' because of his ferocious attacks in 1962 Asian games held in Jakarta. He was named Asia's No 1 player in 1962. He was the first player to receive the Arjuna Award in 1961 in the volleyball category. He was the coach for Sivaganga district in Tamilnadu before retiring in 1998.

Karuthiah Natarajan, created the national record in the Asian Track and Field meet in Manila, Philippines in 1973, clocking 10.3 seconds in 100 Meters sprint.

Olympian C. Thirugnanadurai from Madurai represented India and participated in the Sydney Olympics 2000 in 4x100 relay.

R.Pandeeswari of Madurai caught the attention of world sports with her impressive performance in the Asian Championship in the 1990's.

N Kannayiram of Madurai (died on 1 January 1996 ) represented the Indian Cricket team that toured West Indies once.But he did not play any match in that tour.He was the 12th man.He was a medium pace bowler.

After Anand, Sashikiran and Ramesh, the fourth Grand Master in Chess from Tamilnadu, Magesh Chandran hails from Madurai.Magesh is currently based in US.Madurai is the chess cradle of Tamilnadu.International Chess Masters Deepan Chakravarthy, Poobesh Anand and International Woman Chess Master Kasturi also hail from Madurai.National deaf and dumb Chess Champion M.K.Alaguraja is also from Madurai.
Budding Talents from Madurai
S.Pragadish Palaniappan, a Std.X student of CEOA Matriculation Higher Secondary School, Madurai, is a budding Tamil Orator.He has delivered more than 100 discourses at this young age.Within a short period he has made a niche for himself.He is at ease in delivering religious discourses and is very much in demand and sought after.He is good at playing violin,guitar and Keyboard also.

Lavinishri aged 8 years,a fourth standard student from Madurai, has become the youngest to qualify the Microsoft Certified Professional examination. She has broken the record held by a 10 year old Pakistani girl who qualified for MCP examination,few years back.Records tumble for Lavinishree right from the age of 3.At the age of 3,she became the Limca Book of World Record Holder for Photgraphic memory.In 2006,she won the National Child award for Exceptional Achievment from the government of India.She was given this award for reciting 1300 Kural couplets.
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Old January 17th, 2012, 05:16 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kannan infratech View Post
TVS Group Companies

MANUFACTURING
Axles India Limited
Brakes India Limited
India Nippon Electricals Limited
Irizar TVS (P) Ltd
Lucas-TVS Limited
Lakshmi Auto Components Limited
Sundaram Dynacast Limited
Sundaram-Brake Linings Limited
Sundaram-Clayton Limited
Sundram Fasteners Limited
Sundaram Industries Limited
Sundaram Textiles Limited
TVS Automotive Europe Limited
TVS Cherry Limited
TVS Interconnect Systems Limited
TVS Electronics Limited
TVS Lanka Limited
TVS Srichakra Limited
TVS Motor Co. Ltd.
TVS Sewing Needles Limited
Transenergy Limited
Torsion Products Limited
Turbo Energy Private Limited
Wheels India Limited
Adding few more:

- Harita Seatings sytems
- TVS Rubber


Service industry:
- TVS Logistics Services (A 3PL player and is very different in operations from Southern Roadways)
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Old January 18th, 2012, 05:40 AM   #71
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Remembering Gandhi

The Hindu, January 16, 2012


Madurai was chosen to house the Gandhi Museum as Gandhi's life took vital turning points here.

The Gandhi Museum is located in the historic 17 century Tamukkam palace which served as the summer palace of the Nayak dynasty along with a campus of 13 acres. Later it became the Camp Office of the British Judges and the British Collectors.

The central portion built during 1670 has the Nayak Architecture; the southern portion built during 1877 by the Britishers has the Victorian-English architecture and the northern portion built during 1956-59 has the modern Tamil architecture.

The first floor, housing the gallery has different sections. The first section is called “India fights for Freedom” which has 265 photos with descriptions in Tamil and English and portrays the history of our freedom struggle over the period of last 200 years. All the 30 panels were unique.

Relics and replicas

A small collection of handicrafts collected from the four southern states (Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala) are displayed.

The third section, “Visual Biography ” with illustrations in English, Tamil and Hindi gives detailed biographical sketch of the Father of the Nation starting from his Birth in Porbandar to his assassination in the Birla House in about 150 photographs and illustration.

The fourth section is the important “Relics and Replicas” which preserves 14 Relics and 32 replicas of Mahatma Gandhi.

The most important relic is the blood stained dhoti along with a pair of wooden chappals, leather chappals, spectacles, silken shawl used while attending the Second Round Table Conference in London, wooden spoon, shawl, and other artefacts.

The replicas give an idea about the simple life style of Gandhi (simple living and high thinking). The eco-friendly Mahatma had used a wooden spoon (renewable resource).

He had also used lime stone to wash his body instead of soap; and hand spun clothes.

Letter box

There are many letters and documents and books. A letter to Adolf Hitler (asking him to stop his brutalities); a diplomatic letter to the American President Franklin Roosevelt; the Tamil rendering on revolutionary poet Subramania Bharathi, his signature in Tamil. Few mural paintings can be seen on the walls.

The Museum campus also has Bapu Kutir which is an exact replica of Gandhiji's Sevagram hut where he lived from 1936 to 1946 in Wardha which was designed by his Irish disciple, Mira Behn.

The Sacred Ash Memorial or the Peace Park which is recently renovated contains a small portion of Gandhiji's sacred ash.

The Library has a collection of 30,000 books and micro films. Research and Educational activities programmes propagate his ideals by publications, conducting seminars, and trainings.

The Institute of Gandhian Studies and Research (IGSR), an approved educational institution of Madurai Kamaraj University which conducts courses on Gandhian Thought, Inter-faith Relations, Value Education and Yoga is located within the campus. The Museum also houses a Guest House, Open Air Theatre, Yoga Centre and Kumarappa Kutil.

Symbolic stand

Gandhi Memorial Museum, Madurai is one of its kind in South India. This historical monument was set up after the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi. Senior leaders, under the chairmanship of Dr. Rajendra Prasad, gathered and discussed the possibility of establishing a fitting memorial for the Father of the Nation.The team included Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Dr. J.C. Kumarappa and other luminaries. The team decided to establish Gandhi Museums -North-New Delhi; East-Calcutta and Patna; West-Bombay and Ahmedabad), one for the southern region could not be immediately decided. But the choice of Madurai became unanimous because Madurai was not only an ancient historic city and the cultural capital of Tamil Nadu but also it is closely associated with Gandhiji and the freedom movement.

During his life-time Gandhi visited Madurai five times: in 1919, 1921, 1927, 1934 and in 1946. The second visit made during 1921 for three days from September 20, 21 and 22 was significant. It was here in Madurai on the mid-night of September 22, 1921; that Gandhiji removed his Gujarati attire and took a Tamilian's dhoti measuring four lengths (four mulam) and cut that piece into two and began wearing it. This took place at 251-A, West Masi Street, Madurai.
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Old January 18th, 2012, 05:46 AM   #72
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Namma Madurai: History in bits and pieces



The Hindu, August 31, 2011

Kallikudi is perhaps one of the villages that failed to record its antiquity. Except for the inscriptions, mostly misplaced during repair work, found at the Kulasekera Perumal Temple, the village has a very little of recorded history. The presence of Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu temples show both Saivaites and Vaishnavites lived here.

The 900-years-old Kulasekera Perumal Temple has sanctum sanctorum and mahamandap. Vagaries of nature and human neglect has taken away the ceiling of the mandap. The original idols of Lord Vishnu with his consort Sridevi are left uncared in the open mandap. According to villagers, idols of Lord Vishnu, Boodevi and Sri Devi that are found inside the sanctum sanctorum were added later. The peepul tree has sent its roots deep into the wall damaging the temple further.

The right side wall holds the history in bits and pieces in the form of inscriptions belonging to 12th century A.D. According to the inscriptions, the original name of the village is ‘Porpadevi Chathurvedi Mangalam, which was once a flourishing Brahminical settlement under the geographical division of Sengudi Naadu.

The deity is known as ‘Puravu vari vinnakar.' Going by its name, probably, revenue officials might have had constructed the temple, says C.Shanthalingam, a retired Archaeological officer.

Another inscription has information about the presence of ‘Brahminical sabha' that undertook welfare activities of the village and temple. Besides, the village had five water tanks namely – Periyakulam alias Vikaramapandya Pereri, Thirumalinsolai Pereri, Kumaranarayana Pereri, Govindaneri and Rajasingha Pereri.

It also parts with information about the presence of Meenakshi Amman Endowment that constructed a ‘chatram' for the benefit of travelers in the middle of 16th century A.D.

According to history, Vittalaraya, cousin of Sadasivaraya, a Vijayanagara ruler, marched towards south to subdue king of Travancore, who had been threatening Pandya chieftains. As Kallikudi was an important village, the king ordered a construction of a chatram, which is now in a dilapidated condition.

The Shiva temple is known as Meenakshi Chokkanathar Temple. “Probably, this might be the impact of the main temple. A separate shrine was constructed for Goddess Meenakshi all over the Pandya country during this period” says Shanthalingam.

The temple remains intact with separate shrines for Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Shiva. Besides, the temple has the deities of Lord Vinayaka, Lord Shanmuga with his six faces sitting on a peacock, Lord Bairava and Lord Surya. The empty niches reflect the later Pandya architectural style.

Surprisingly, the Shiva temple has a stucco figure on the northern wall resembling Lord Buddha or Lord Mahavira. “This figurine might be a saint doing penance in the yoga posture and do not rush to conclusions,” says Shanthalingam.

The huge temple has only one inscription belonging to British period. It is a caution notice served by the then Collector of Madurai to Zamindar of Pavali, who ill treated the residents of Kallikudi.

Now, P.Sundara Mahalingam and K.Pitchai Pandi maintain the Siva temple as a service. Pitchaipandi, 70, gives details about the temple history and festivals celebrated. “Except for special occasions, Brahmins hesitate to come to the temple as we could not pay them their salary,” says Sundara Mahalingam, who performs pujas regularly. ‘Anna abishekam' is performed on full-moon day during the Tamil month Aippasi besides the regular ‘prathosha' pujas.
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Old January 18th, 2012, 05:56 AM   #73
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Nice postings from most of our forumers mainly Gilli and rsubbu Nice that some less trodden places are also coming to light by this thread
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Old January 18th, 2012, 06:02 AM   #74
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Was not sure where to post this article, hence chose to post in this thread. It's on a tailor who works at Pudu Mandapam who has been quoted in tourist guide books in French, Itlay, German etc. Very interesting read.
------------------------
Made to measure

Source: The Hindu

I bet, you will never be able to guess Basher's French, Italian and German connection.

At 57, he sits in a small cramped shop started by his father, Khader Moideen, in 1938 inside ‘Pudumandapam'. His job is to continuously cut yarns of clothes into various shapes, sizes and designs.

Wearing a baniyan and lungi, Basher remains bent most of the time over his cloth cutting table. With a tailor's chalk in hand, the measuring tape around his neck, his eyes and mind remain focused on the fabric in front of him.

He looks up only at the call of a customer, who come to him from far and near to get their garments stitched by him specifically.

“I offer individual clothing to individual people which expresses their style,” he says in between his snipping scissors.

But such is his reputation for giving perfectly customized fitting that his customers return greatly happy or send new people searching for him in crowded Pudumandapam holding a copy of “Le Guide Routard – Inde de sud”.

Interesting

And Basher tells this small interesting story of his life that made him famous as owner of “Baaisy Tailor & Le Boutique”.

In 1999, a French reporter from the above mentioned guide book of France with a chapter on India, hit Basher's shop for some tailoring work. He was so impressed not only by Basher's custom clothing but even his honesty because he did not over-charge from a foreigner and sincerity for delivering the stitched items to his hotel at the appointed but an unearthly hour within 10 hours of placing the order.

The French tourist also fell in love with Basher's small kiosk selling all handicraft items, bags (the popular ‘surukkupais'), strolls, scarves, cushion covers etc. He went back and included Basher's shop in the French guide book with a small description and location.

Basher has remained in these pages for the past one decade.

“He could not pronounce my name properly as he had difficulty in saying ‘r', so I became ‘Baaisy' for him and that's the way he named by shop in the book and I too changed the name board here,” he says pointing to the green board on the top.

The guide book has been translated in German and Italian too and that is how Basher gets his continuous stream of clients from these countries.

Versatile

He cuts and stitches any dress in demand, from formal suits for men to informal kurta-pyjamas and daily wear trousers and shirts. And for women, from short kurtis to long kurtas and salwar or churidar sets, elastic pyjamas, short tops. The customer just has to explain to Basher what he or she wants and how.

“The fit is the most important issue for any tailor. Everyone's body is different, some have longer arms or a longer upper body which needs to be perceived properly. The level of customisation you can give to the garment has no limit,” he explains.

“I have been in tailoring business for almost four decades. My father trained me. But I am not sure what really attracts people to me,” he says humbly. Perhaps he is one of the edgier tailors in the trade, less conservative than others and yet as committed to making quality suits, jackets and trousers.

He says his business is sustainable. His father started by paying a monthly rent of Rs.1.50 to the Temple administration for the space inside Pudumandapam. Today, he pays Rs.300 a month and earns on an average Rs.500 a day.

“I basically operate on my own. I have three sewing machines and three people to help me now. I don't do any more stitching, only cutting job. My charges are very reasonable,” he shares.

From Rs.90 to Rs.250, Basher charges depending on the item stitched and fabric used. His niche customers are a demanding lot and can easily take their money elsewhere. But the fact that so many choose to keep their custom with Basher is testament to the reliable and consistent service he offers.

On a regular day, he works from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and well past midnight when time is premium. “There is lot of competition and I can neither afford to miss deadline or charge more,” he says. His small shop works as trial room with a curtain drawn. If any alterations are needed, he does them on-the-spot. “It is perhaps this service which works in my favour,” he smiles.

There's an old expression that a tailor doesn't need to fit just the body, but also the mind and this is very true of Basher. Or why else 120 of the 200-odd tailors left from yesteryears would unhesitantly show you to “shop no.128”. They are fully aware and proud that Basher has brought them on the international hemline.
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Old January 18th, 2012, 06:07 AM   #75
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Quote:
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Nice postings from most of our forumers mainly Gilli and rsubbu Nice that some less trodden places are also coming to light by this thread
Thanks for your words MK, Madurai is a city with very long history and is one of very few cities in the world which are still holding on to their tag of "prominent places" over the last 2,000 years having seen many ups and downs and almost conditions of total destruction. It always gives me great pleasure to know more about Madurai and every time i am more fascinated and proud the more i come to know.

Any idea what's the status of Pudumandapam fillip that Mr.Sagayam had ordered. Are they eviciting all shops from the mantap or whats the current plan ?
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Old January 18th, 2012, 06:14 AM   #76
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Originally Posted by rsubbu.mdu View Post
Thanks for your words MK, Madurai is a city with very long history and is one of very few cities in the world which are still holding on to their tag of "prominent places" over the last 2,000 years having seen many ups and downs and almost conditions of total destruction. It always gives me great pleasure to know more about Madurai and every time i am more fascinated and proud the more i come to know.

Any idea what's the status of Pudumandapam fillip that Mr.Sagayam had ordered. Are they eviciting all shops from the mantap or whats the current plan ?
I don't know about their relocation rsubbu, but I noticed a big construction (more or less the ground sprawl size of the pudhumandapam) near the very pudhumandapam. This site was used as a car parking by hajeemoosa all these days and i suppose that to be the place of the shopping complex kind where the shops from pudhumandapam will be given place for their business.

Last edited by madurakarenda; January 18th, 2012 at 07:04 AM.
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Old January 18th, 2012, 06:49 AM   #77
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The nes Construction is nothing but the Kunnathur choultry planned before to shift Pudumandapam shops and utilise Pudumandapam as a museum..

Good to see the Choultry construction works are in good progress..!!
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Old January 18th, 2012, 08:00 AM   #78
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Some paintings depicting the old shades of Madurai:

Source : http://www.europeana.eu/



Description: Plate 13 from the second set of Thomas and William Daniell's 'Oriental Scenery.' This view shows one of the vaulted side halls that opens onto the great court in the middle of the complex on the north-east side of the Swarga Vilasa or Celestial Pavilion, the Palace built by Tirumal Nayak in 1636.




Description: Plate14 from the second set of Thomas and William Daniell's 'Oriental Scenery'. Madurai was capital of the Nayaka dynasty, which ruled the southern-most part of the Tamil area in the 16th and 17th centuries. This stone pavilion was built by Tirumala Nayak, the most famous of the Madurai rulers, on the east side of the Fort and was used during religious festivals. This view particularly attracted Europeans as the motif of the pavilion was later reproduced on Staffordshire-ware and on French wallpapers.



Description: Plate 15 from the second set of Thomas and William Daniell's 'Oriental Scenery.' The Svarga Vilas or 'Celestial Pavilion' of Tirumala Nayak's Palace at Madurai was built in 1636. The pointed ceiling supported by stone ribs is held up by massive circular columns topped by piers and linked by pointed scallopped arches, with an arcaded gallery opening into the nave above the side aisles. The hall was in a state of disrepair at the time of the artists' visit who deplored that it '...is at present of little more use than affording shelter to cattle'. The hall was later used by the British as government offices and law courts, and fully restored in 1871-82..



Description: Plate 16 from the second set of Thomas and William Daniell's 'Oriental Scenery.' The city of Madurai is dominated by the temple complex dedicated to Minakshi, the patron goddess. It is like a self-contained city with courtyards, pillared halls and shrines. The four gateway or gopuras of the temple were added in the 17th Century during the Nayaka dynasty. They are elaborately decorated with figures of divinities and celestial beings, monsters faces and animals, all covered in polychrome plasterwork.



Description: Plate 17 from the second set of Thomas and William Daniell's 'Oriental Scenery.' The Daniells commented about the state in which they found the palace of Tirumala Nayaka at Madurai, 'The ruins of the palace at Madura show evident marks of its former grandeur; many of the buildings appear to have suffered much by time, and not inconsiderably... by the destructive effects of war; a few, however, are sufficiently in repair to be converted into use by the garrison, as granaries, store-houses, powder magazines'.



Description: Plate18 from the second set of Thomas and William Daniell's 'Oriental Scenery'. The Pudu Mandapa is outside the east gate of the Minakshi temple at Madurai. Built by Tirumala Nayak in 1635 as a choultry or reception hall for pilgrims, it is a long hall with piers carved with magnificent yalis (mythical animals), and portrait sculptures of the Nayaka rulers and their ministers. The projecting brackets supporting the ceiling are carved in the form of seated lions.The figures in the centre are paying 'divine honours', as Daniell calls it, to the carved images of Tirumala Nayaka and three of his wives.



Description: Uncoloured aquatint by J. Wells after a drawing on the spot by Capt. Trapaud, part of a set of his twenty views published London in 1788, of the ruins of the Palace at Madurai from the north-east.In the 16th century Madurai was an independent kingdom under the Nayakas. Tirumala Nayaka (1623-60), the most important rulers of that dynasty, was an ambitious builder. He patronised the construction of the imposing Minakshi Sundareshvara Temple complex which dominates the centre of the town. His Palace, built in 1636, is situated south-east of the temple. Only two sections of the palace survive, the Dance Hall and the Durbar Hall as the rest of the palace was dismantled between 1662 and 1682 when the capital was transferred to Trichinopoly. A rectangular courtyard surrounded by arcades precedes ...



Description: Lithograph of the The Teppakulam tank at Madurai by L.H. Rudder after the original drawing by Prince Aleksandr Mikhailovich Saltuikov of 1841 and dated 1848.The temple city of Madurai is dominated by the imposing complex of Minakshi Sundareshvara, one of the major architectural achievements of the Nayaka period. The construction of this temple was made possible by the magnificence of Tirumala Nayak (1623-1659). The rectangular precinct covers six hectares and has eleven huge towers and four entrance gopurams. Inside this enclosure there are columned mandapas, tanks, shrines and the two temples of Shiva and Minakshi. Teppakulam is situated at the eastern end of the town, about two miles from the temple. It is a large rectangular tank with an island in the middle with a small temple and pavi...
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Old January 18th, 2012, 01:09 PM   #79
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Quote:
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Good info, really Gilli. COuld I get more info related to the TVS transport/ others in Madurai. Old Vintage photos, if available, are more use.
The Madurai based BUsiness conglomerate has turned 100 years of business this 2012, and am planning for a presentation on the group.

Thanks in advance
Hope this blog will help you to some extent :

http://sriramv.wordpress.com/2011/04...ing-in-madras/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TVS_Group

http://www.tvsgroup.com/pages/group.htm
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Old January 18th, 2012, 01:11 PM   #80
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Excellent digging subbu sir..!
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