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August 28, 2015

The World as per the Todas

Todas came into this world a long time before us. They also have more PhDs on them than most of us have on us. Enough doctorates to fill a small bookshelf. But what I like and love about Todas are that they are ardent conservationists. They have truly imbibed the understanding that they are just a small part of nature and it is nature which is everything. Some time back they protested to be given rights to go to Mukurthi National park to collect the required raw materials for their temples. Many people said they should not be allowed to enter the pristine park. But the park was not there when Todas used to live there.

The Todas know more about nature than most of us and do not go shouting in the streets that they do. They are just one of the exotic communities of the Nilgiris whose vote don't count. I can only wish that they manage to survive this kalyug. I can only wish that my best friend Aradu Kuttan keeps on planting trees and share his knowledge of the Shola system with the world, for when he is gone, these trees will be botanical wonders and not cultural glues.