Dear Prof. Alexander,
"Another which distinguished our family in the earlier social history was generous, kind and just treatment extended to untouchables and labourers, who suffered deprivations in the caste –ridden past. An interesting anecdote about vadukas and Kanianthra Ninan Chandy Tharakan bears testimony to this."
Would you kindly tell me what this testimony was?
SARA KNIGHT. ENGLAND
This incident is briefly referred to in my English edition of the KANIANTHRA FAMILY HISTORY PUBLISHED on Jan 1st 2000. That is an abridged international edition of the original book in Malayalam published in 1991. My website KANIANTHRA FAMILY SITE- Home page – last pages contain Family Traits- you can read the incident-- there in brief.
The incident happened in the life of Nina Chandy Tharakan 1735-1800 and his son Chandy Kunju Thommy Tharakan-1765-1822 A D, my ancestors. Our ancestors were much ahead of the times in their approach towards the down trodden untouchables mainly because of their Christian tradition and teachings.
The son married Pallikadavil Annamma. The new bride hardly 10 or 11 years old –as was the custom--came into a large family of her husband AND FATHER-IN- LAW.-Besides the family members there were another forty vaduka family members- over a hundred of them including women and their children-. Loitering in the house and AND were being fed at the meal times.
ANNAMMA GOT DISGUSTED in pushing around in the welter of Vaduka women and children AND went to her home declaring that she will return only after these Vaduka families were settled elsewhere in their own huts.
Vaduka is the name given to pulaya- pariah dalits working for their master and got converted to .Christianity. They and their women work in the family paddy farms and coconut groves and earn their food. Their children get free meals from the master.
Chandy Kunju Thommy Tharakan in two years time got these Vadukas settled in separate huts on his lands in the village. Annamma immediately returned to her husband for their family life.