At 103, hard work is what keeps her going

Pappammal runs a provisions store and tends to her farm

September 12, 2018 01:34 am | Updated 08:20 am IST - COIMBATORE

 M. Pappammal at her field in Thekkampatti near Mettupalayam in Coimbatore.

M. Pappammal at her field in Thekkampatti near Mettupalayam in Coimbatore.

For some, age is just a number. And for certain others like Pappammal, it is a number that they don’t care much about. So at 103, Ms. Pappammal is busy doing what she knows best—labouring at her field in Thekkampatti, a village on the foothills of western ghats and on the banks of river Bhavani.

M. Pappammal alias Rangammal was born in the year 1914 to Maruthachala Mudaliar and Velammal in Devalapuram village near here. After she lost her parents at an early age, she and her two sisters were brought up by their paternal grandmother at Thekkampatti.

She inherited the provision store in Thekkampatti after the demise of her grandmother. She also started an eatery. She bought nearly 10 acres of land in the village from the earnings she generated from these businesses. As she had no issues, she brought up the children of her sisters.

Though she gave away 7.5 acres to her sisters’ daughters, she continues to cultivate millets, pulses and vegetables in the remaining land that she holds. She also runs the provision store and the eatery. Ms. Pappammal had also been politically and socially active in the early part of her life. She was elected as a councillor of the Thekkampatti Panchayat in the year 1959. She was also a special invitee at the debates organised by the Tamil Nadu Agriculture University (TNAU). An ardent fan of DMK President M. Karunanidhi, she was a member of the party too.

And she has no qualms sharing her secret for longevity: Hard work, being straight forward and staying clear of mental worries. Probe a little further, and she sheepishly admits that she continues to enjoy her mutton soup twice a week and is fond of biryani served on a banana leaf. That’s some food for thought.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.