A proud award and a prouder recipient
Participating in a Thirukkural competition? That’s ordinary. Winning one such competition? That’s a little more than the ordinary. And being awarded at a national level, by the Hon’ble President of India? Now, that’s something EXTRAORDINARY! This time, it is one of our clan members that’s gone the extra mile and taken the Tamil language more seriously than just her mother tongue. We are talking about K. Latchiya (B.E. Robotics, 2014-2018) who was awarded at the Parliament of India for her acumen in Thirukkural on 17th December 2015. A few words with her about the process of such an accomplishment and her motivation reveals her profound passion for the language and the pride that goes with it.
Q: This is a remarkable achievement. What was the process of the competition and ….?
A: “The competition basically was open to all Indians aged between 12 and 29. The first phase of it involved a series of tests (both oral and written), conducted at PSG College of Technology in which I was selected. The next phase took place in Madurai where I proudly represented the entire set of PSG Institutions. I was eventually selected at this State Level competition and at the National Level, was one of the proud 133 to receive ‘THE THIRUKURAL SELVAR AWARD’ at the Parliament from the Central Ministers, following which we had a special meeting with the Hon’ble President of India Mr. Pranab Mukherjee and a photo opportunity.”
Q: How and when did your interest towards Thirukkural and the Tamil language begin?
A: “I used to be greatly impressed by my Grade 1 Tamil teacher, who instilled the interest and importance of the language in me. I memorised the entire 1330 verses of Thirukkural when I was about 7 years and have found it very hard to grow apart from it ever since!”
Q: 1330 is not an easy number of verses to bear in mind! Do you remember how you memorised the entire set of couplets?
A: “I think I used to learn about 10-20 every day along with trying to recall the ones that were learnt previously.I also used to learn the meaning of each Kural with it, and tried to live up to it as well”
Q: You have made your parents, friends and family undoubtedly proud. What were your parents’ reaction to this?
A: “My parents’ happiness could find no bounds. They were elated and extremely proud of the fact that I represented the family, college and state at a National level. They said that it gave them immense happiness that the Indian government was able to appreciate all sorts of talents from every corner of the country.”
Q: How was it like to be present at the Parliament?
A: “I, being at the parliament, was something I only dreamt of and never thought of it as actually happening. It was an absolute dream-come-true moment. The fact that students were treated as special guests struck me with awe. We also got to interact with the Central Ministers which made the entire event even more memorable and indelible.”
Q: Could you take us through a virtual tour of the Parliament by explaining the things you saw and were awed at?
A: “The Parliament seemed impeccable. Everything you could see there seemed to be some kind of rule or order. ‘The Perfect form of Perfection’ would be the phrase that best describes it. The architecture of the Rashtrapathi Bhavan left us all stunned by the extreme diligence with which it seemed to have been built and with which it was maintained.Everything was spic and span. It left us marvelled by how the Indian emblem was engraved in almost every object in the place!”
Q: Try to give quick one-word answers that best describe the following:
The President? A: Simplicity!
The Parliament? A: Magnificent!
The Entire Experience? A: Spellbound!
Q: I’m sure there are a bunch of people who encouraged and motivated you behind your back in order for this to happen!Would you like to extend gratitude to them?
A: “Yes, I agree 100%. I could not have done this by my own. The main motivation factor was Mr. Vijaya Ragavan, Assisitant Professor of Humanities, who is also the Faculty Advisor of PSG Tech’s Tamil Mandram. He gave me the push that I needed. And of course, my parents, who were always supportive in all my ventures.”
The entire team of THE BRIDGE wishes you hearty congratulations and best wishes to all your future endeavors.