Vijayadasami: Thousands of children initiated into learning

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Thiruvananthapuram, 06 October 2011: Thousands of children in Kerala entered the world of learning by scribbling their first letters on Vijayadasami day on Thursday, marking the culmination of the Navaratri festival.


Early on Thursday morning, children, mostly aged two to three, along with their parents, gathered at temples, schools, libraries, cultural centres and media houses to go through “Ezhuthiniruthu” ritual of writing their initial letters, invoking blessings of Saraswati, Goddess of Learning and Art.


Transcending religious barriers, Christian and Muslim children also underwent the ritual in many parts of the state. The auspicious occasion has for centuries been observed by Keralites as “Vidyarambham”, the beginning of learning.


Teachers, writers, artists, film personalities and senior politicians helped the tots write their first letters “Hari..Sree…” in platters filled with rice.



Chief Minister Oommen Chandy initiated some tots at a ceremony at Vayloppilli Samskrithi Bhavan in the state capital. In some churches, priests made the children write a couple of lines of verses from the Bible.


Hundreds of Malayali children also had their initiation not only in temples in Kerala, but also in shrines outside the state like Kollur Mookambika temple in South Karnataka.


Essentially a Hindu custom, the increasing response to “Vidyarambham” from people from other faiths is seen as a sign of the cultural vibrancy of a society that gives great importance to the education of its children and considers human resources as its biggest asset.


There was a heavy rush at Thunchanparampu in Malappuram district, the hallowed home of medieval poet Ezhuthachan, revered as father of Malayalam literature.



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