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Sunday, 26 August 2012

Spreading awareness on our heritage -The INTACH Way

Express News Service
Thiruvananthapuram | Updated Aug 24, 2012 at 09:55am IST

The Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) Thiruvananthapuram chapter has released ‘Paithrika Parichayam’, the Malayalam translation of the ‘Handbook on Heritage’, an informative text for teachers and students interested in awareness of our heritage. ‘Handbook on Heritage’ was prepared by a host of INTACH experts led by Dr Shobita Punja, now Director, National Culture Fund. With the aid of the Union Culture Ministry, INTACH city chapter convener Shaji Krishnan did the Malayalam translation.
 The formal release of ‘Paithrika Parichayam’ was held during a ‘Workshop for setting up of heritage clubs in schools’ at St Roch’s Convent School, Shangumugham, recently. INTACH founder member Uthradom Thirunal Marthanda Varma released the book by presenting the first copy to Anil Kumar Pandala, Project Director, Thiruvananthapuram Road Development Company Ltd (TRDCL).
 The workshop, held on August 18 and 19 with the support of INTACH headquarters in Delhi, had Purnima Datt and Moby Zachairah of INTACH’s Heritage Education and Communication Service (HECS Delhi) as course coordinators. Study kits prepared by experts were provided to the teachers. The aim of the workshop was to educate teachers on the ways to inculcate awareness of India’s heritage among students.
 This is the second time that this workshop is being organised in Thiruvananthapuram. Already, a few schools in the district have INTACH-sponsored heritage clubs.  Marthanda Varma stressed for more emphasis to be given on educating the younger generation on our rich heritage and lauded INTACH’s efforts in this direction.
 Pandala spoke on ‘Conserving heritage as cities expand - The Thiruvananthapuram experience.’ He spoke of how heritage buildings and places become the first casualty in urban expansion and narrated the efforts taken by TRDCL in conserving the Rama Rao Lamp, which is more than a century old.
 Ramani Menon, teacher, Government High School, Peruvallur, in Malappuram district, who did tremendous work of her own in getting students interested in heritage and organised heritage clubs in her school, gave a talk on her personal experience and how initial resistance soon transformed to cooperation and the emergence of a new generation interested in heritage.
 Rajashree Mohan, architect, gave a presentation on ‘Built heritage of Thiruvananthapuram’ and explained the major changes in building patterns and materials that has taken place in the city. The concluding function was presided over by noted Malayalam film director Shaji N Karun, who, while speaking on ‘Heritage and cinema’, said cinema too can be a medium for preserving heritage.

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