‘Nawabi’ Marathas flourish in Hyderabad

Maharashtrians have had their presence in the City for at least 300 years.

For Marathis, Hyderabad is not home away from home but an extended home. This community has given much to the City of pearls and has imbibed many cultural strains.

Maharashtrians have had their presence in the City for at least 300 years. Marathi organisations say the Maharashtrians living in Andhra Pradesh could be between 10-12 lakhs while the number of them living in Hyderabad could be around 3.5 lakh to 4 lakh. They are concentrated in Shalibanda, Gowliguda, Dhoolpet, Sultan Bazar, Kachiguda and Nallakunta. Many of them are doctors, educationists or lawyers. There are more than 25 Marathi organisations in the City .

Marathwada was part of the former Hyderabad state until May 1, 1960, when it was transferred to Bombay. “As Hyderabad was the capital of the Nizam’s Hyderabad since 1724, people from Marathwada came here for opportunities,” says DP Joshi, president of Marathi Sahitya Parishad. Old timers note that Maharashtrians were appointed in the Nizam’s army or revenue service. They were called Nawabi Marathas.

Pratik Manohar Bhosale had never heard of Hyderabad but was told by his friends in Kanerwadi, a small village in Osmanabad, that it was a land of opportunities. “He says that his life changed after coming here. He spent his entire life here despite not having any relatives here,” says Saroj Bhosale, Pratik’s daughter. There are many like Bhosale who came in search of livelihood.

For some like Malini Rajurkar (singer), Dr Pandit (CCMB scientist), Vilas Afzalpurkar (chief justice of High Court) life changed after shifting here.

Taking about festivals, Dr Vishwanath Gogate, a member of AP Chitpawan Sangha, a Maharashtrian association said, “On Gudi Padwa, we make the traditional Puranpoli at home.”

“We speak Marathi and Telugu and are fluent in Urdu. We don’t feel like outsiders,” says theatre personality Bhaskar Shewalkar.

When Satish Surve came to the City, he never knew it would become his home. After 48 years, he cannot think of living anywhere else. “I initially stayed on because of my work and my son’s education. But the City is so peaceful and people are accommodating. I cannot think of shifting base now,” he says.

Like many others from his community Satish Surve feels insecure because of the treatment being meted out to North Indians in Mumbai.“If Maharashtrians can ask people from other places to leave then why not the locals here?” Dr Vishwanath Gogate says the community has no problems. Some pinpricks, but nothing serious.

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Lokmat Editor Raju Nayak “flexed muscle” against RTI activists

Mayabhushan Nagvenkar, Goa correspondent of The Pioneer, New Delhi reports from capital Panaji:

Editor of Marathi daily under court scanner for ‘scuttling’ graft probe

An editor of a popular multi-edition Marathi newspaper has been involved in using threats and complainants to scuttle legal proceedings in a case involving misappropriation of public funds, a Goa court has said.

The startling observations were made by special sessions judge Nutan Sardessai in her order allowing complainants Kashinath Shetye and Ketan Govekar, incidentally both Right to Information (RTI) activists, to intervene in the anticipatory bail case of an ex-committee member of an educational trust that has been accused of misappropriating Rs 21 lakh of public funds.

“The powerful and politically connected persons of the School Trust/Society and the editor of Lokmat, Raju Nayak, either flexed their muscle to instil fear in their minds or otherwise tried to entice or lure them with promises of rewards in the event they comply in order to scuttle the legal proceedings,” Sardessai said in her order, which has come as a shocker for the media fraternity here.

“The problem of misappropriation of public funds in Goa is on the rise, a threat of immeasurable gravity, threatening the future of the Government and the society and much more so when an educational establishment, teachers and officials of the police of the State are inextricably entangled in corruption to protect them and to facilitate their functioning. The interveners are receiving threats periodically on phone to withdraw the application. Even the editor of Lokmat, Raju Nayak is involved,” Sardessai further said.

The order also states that two complainants had not only been threatened and induced, but also harassed, put “under private surveillance” and were “constantly followed”.

“The authorities concerned for extraneous reasons and/or for illegal benefit/gratification from the proceeds are turning a blind eye to the illegalities and also to their complaint. The police are pressurized into inaction which is apparent from their refusal to act since 2009 and hesitating to arrest powerful politicians who are in fact the primary accused in the matter,” the court further said.

Sawant, an ex-committee member of the trust running the Shri Durga English School of Pernem, 30 kms from here, had filed for anticipatory bail after a criminal complaint accused trust officials of misappropriating Rs 21 lakh from a Rs 36 lakh Government loan.

Lokmat is a popular Marathi daily which runs several editions in Maharashtra, including one in Goa.

When asked for comment on the court order, Lokmat’s group editor Dinkar Raikar did not respond.

Sunil Gavaskar’s dream at Rashtrapati Bhavan

AJITH PILLAI imagines in his column Straight drive to Raisina Hill  in The Daily Mail about Little Master Sunil Gavasker,  dreaming of being the President of India and delivering his Presidential address:

Friends, cricketers and countrymen, lend me your bats; I stand here to bowl a few long hops to Manmohanji not to praise him; I know the shots he missed and the catches he dropped will live after him; The several good innings he played will be interred with the UPA’s bones: So be it with our PM…The noble Sushma Swaraj hath told you Manmohanji was anti-aam admi. And Sushamaji is an honourable man-oops woman…’

….By now dawn had broken. I decided to call APJ Abdul Kalam for his advice. Without any provocation he asked me if I preferred my eggs sunny side up and I answered in the affirmative. 

‘Gavaskarji, you are so predictable,’ he said in his typical drawl. 

And then he launched into classical Tamil which was not Marathi to me. 

Thankfully, he translated poet Thiruvallur into English although he made me repeat the verses after him. 

‘The axle of a cart loaded even with peacocks’ feathers can break. Think and then undertake work; to think later will bring disgrace.’ 

Rattled I rang up Sidhu for some news. He was apologetic. ‘Sunnybhai, things are bad. Soniaji says the Congress can’t back another Maharashtrian after nominating Tendulkar to the Rajya Sabha. And BJP President, Nitin Gadkari, says you’re unsuitable since you once refused to wear khaki shorts… Guru, I’ve finally learnt that a fat man downsized through surgery is more dangerous than a tree that grows in girth through watering.’ 

Well, there went my Presidential hopes… 

Read more: With Sachin joining the RS, the Little Master deserves to be considered for the presidency

‘Mai Boli’, keeping Marathi alive in Jerusalem

In his Marathi quarterly magazine, Mai Boli (My Mother Tongue), Massil writes: “I want to be happy,/but my heart is not happy./ Why?/ I remember India./ Here, nothing is missing,/but always I remember you, India.”

One house in the hills of Ramot in Northwest Jerusalem stands out from others. On its lawn, the Indian tricolor takes its place alongside the blue and white flag of Israel. Inside the house lives a portly, friendly, Marathi Jew named Noah Massil and his wife Sybia.

Now 65, the one time Mumbai electrician, and long time president of the Central Organization of Indian Jews, immigrated to Israel in 1970. Most of the Maharashtra-rooted Bene Israel community, to which Massil belongs, came here on the heels of Israel’s victorious Six Day War in 1967. They are by far the largest of the three Indian émigré groups that together number around 75,000. Jews from Cochin and the Baghdadis from Calcutta mainly, are the other two. There are perhaps 30,000 Bene Israel, but estimates vary. Some put the figure much higher.

In a country where immigrants often cut ties definitively to their native lands, Massil and his wife, like many in his community, return every year to visit old friends, places from their youth. In one of his poems for his Marathi quarterly magazine, Mai Boli (My Mother Tongue), Massil writes: “I want to be happy,/but my heart is not happy./ Why?/ I remember India./ Here, nothing is missing,/but always I remember you, India.”

“We publish seasonal stories, first person stories, poems about India and about Israel,” he says.

Massil himself is the author of two books of Marathi poetry, Kawya Nad (1970) andMazi Mai Marathi (2002). Though its subscriber base, at just over 500, is modest, it was praised by Madhav Gadkari, the late editor of the Marathi daily, Loksatta, as “a bridge between Israel and all Marathi speakers,” deserving “to be saluted for their contribution in strengthening bonds between India, Israel and abroad.”

There are no Marathi classes in Israel, even in places like Ashdod, where the Bene Israel community is strong. The young are too busy assimilating. The job of preserving the Marathi language and culture is left to the old.

But Massil isn’t complaining.

Read the full article in Little India: Keeping Marathi Alive in Jerusalem

Upcoming 6 new publications in English, Hindi, Marathi & Kannada !

National Dunia, a Hindi daily

SB Media has launched a new Hindi daily, National Dunia, today. The newspaper will be circulated in Delhi, NCR and Ghaziabad. National Dunia consists of 16 main pages and four supplementary pages. It has a cover price of Rs 3. The four-page supplement that will accompany National Dunia will be dedicated to health, education and entertainment. This will be an everyday affair with the exception of Sunday when a 48-page magazine consisting of current affairs and infotainment will be circulated with the newspaper without any extra charge.

Life 365

Pune-based Aaj Ka Anand Papers is all set to foray into the English daily space with its new launch, Life 365, from April 15. The group brings out a Hindi daily, Aaj Ka Ananad and a Marathi eveninger, Sandhyanand. As a promotional offer, Life 365 will be bundled along with Aaj Ka Anand. Life 365 has been doing test runs for the past 15 days and the feedback to the newspaper has been good.

 

 

Divya Marathi,  Solapur

Dainik Bhaskar Group launched the fifth edition of its Marathi newspaper, Divya Marathi, from Solapur, Maharashtra, on March 31, 2012. The first edition of Divya Marathi was launched from Aurangabad in May 2011. Thereafter, other editions from Nashik, Jalgaon and Ahmednagar were also launched. With five editions of Divya Marathi, the group now completes its coverage in the state of central Maharashtra. In the overall number of publications, this is the 65th edition of the group.

Kannada daily, Vijayavani

VRL Media’s Kannada daily, Vijayavani, hit the stands early this week. It is currently circulated to three prime markets, namely, Bengaluru, Mangalore and Hoobly and is priced at Rs 2.50. The daily is planning to expand its circulation to Bijapur and Mysore.

 

Following which editions from Gangavati, Chitiradurga, Shimoga and Gulbarga will be published in two months’ time. Vijayavani is the only all-colour Kannada daily in the market. Chinnappa Bhat will lead the editorial division of Vijayavani. Apart from the regular content, a four-page special supplement catering to various interests will be circulated with the main edition every day. The supplements will focus on a range of topics such as literature, astrology, lifestyle, movies, health, travel, education, etc.

Women’s Health

India Today Group launched its new magazine, Women’s Health, on April 2, 2012 in New Delhi. The magazine is a sister product of Men’s Health and is published by US-based Rodale. India is the 27th country to launch the magazine. Women’s Health will showcase doctors, celebrity fitness trainers, weight loss coaches, and sex and relationship counselors. The print run of the monthly magazine is approximately 45000-50000. It has a cover price of Rs 100. The magazine is targeted at women who are in their 20’s and 30’s. These are the women who came of age with a sense of confidence and belief that anything is possible. Women’s Health not only addresses issues such as health, fitness, weight loss and eating right, but also offers 360-degree solutions for a young woman’s life. It focuses on issues such as relationships, success at the workplace, etc. he cornerstone of all this is service journalism that puts the reader and upgrading her life ahead of everything else. But Women’s Health does it with boldness and verve. It makes health fun and easy to achieve. Women’s Health currently has 14 international editions and is present in 27 countries such as The United States, Italy, Germany, UK, Turkey, China, India, among others.