Sunday, August 09, 2009

"In a bid to promote Tamil language and culture, the Tamil Nadu government has started a scheme under which babies born in city corporation hospitals would be given a gold ring if they are given Tamil names"

So much for culture and language. Will this scheme work?

We fail to understand that culture is something that cannot be preserved. It has to be cultivated to keep it alive. And we cant keep it alive just by distributing gold rings for Tamil names. For me, the cave men would have been a happier lot. They lived their life and went away. There were no attempts made in promoting, preserving and enforcing their culture. If something within their 'culture' was worthwhile to be absorbed by the next generation, it was absorbed. Rest everything was discarded. This absorption is a natural activity - and any external force in this process would make it look spurious.

A one-gram gold ring makes no sense for a baby. There are about hundred other things that could help the child and its future. I'm not sure what motivated the TN Government to pass this scheme. Now that its into action, I hope that the distributed gold goes into the right causes. I am sure that there are many parents who will re-think of a suitable name for their upcoming baby when they hear about this scheme. What would matter to them is a mere gold ring - the culture is nowhere into picture.

I appreciate attempts to promote culture. It is our heritage and our fundamental duty is to make sure that it is not forgotten. Definitely, this approach has to be well thought and practical. If we really have a lot of gold rings to distribute, why don't we make it a wedding gift for the bride who gets married only when she's eighteen and over?