KERALA

Voice of a community

In the service of the Brahmin community in central Kerala for the last 20 years, Shrutivani, a monthly publication brought out by the Thrissur town unit of the Kerala Brahmana Sabha, is crossing yet another landmark this month when it completes two decades of fruitful existence. It has become a much sought-after publication in select households because it has opened the way of marriage for hundreds of subscribers through the matrimonial advertisements.

Starting from a humble beginning, 20 like-minded persons of Thrissur pooled in Rs.100 each to create a corpus of Rs.2,000. The then Editor of Malayalam newspaper `Express' K. Balakrishnan released the first issue in September 1985 when the title was `Shrutibharati' which later became Shruitvani. The then district organising secretary of the Brahmana Sabha A.S. Mani received the first issue, which had eight pages and a print order of 500 copies.

However, the Brahmin community showed much enthusiasm and this spurred the founder editor T.N. Venkatachalam to go for more pages and now it is coming out with nearly 150 pages with multi-colour posters and covers, and with good technical back up. The offices of the publication have also been fully computerised, says a note in the publication.

The publication views the carrying of matrimonial advertisements as a great service to the community since it has been traditionally accepted that matching of `horoscopes' is a must if a marriage is to take place in the Brahmin community. Hence publishing horoscopes provides a one-stop shop for the alliance seekers. Moreover, the publication also encourages stories, which highlight the plight of indigent families, and several generous persons contribute to financially help the indigent community members.

Though a publication of a district, Shrutivani has come to represent the voice of the community in the State. Also, it highlights the need for social justice to the community.

K. Venkiteswaran

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