Kodagu First a Celebration. Positive News, Facts & Achievements about Kodagu, Coorgs and the People of Kodagu – here at Home and Overseas
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    M.R. Poovamma.

    M.R. Poovamma.

    Their two-year bans over, the relay runners who brought doping shame to the country in 2011 are now back on track and in the national camp.

    But, M.R. Poovamma doesn’t feel any threat. The Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games are lined up between July and October in Korea and Scotland next year and Poovamma feels that three of the berths in the six-member 4×400 women’s relay team, which includes two reserves, are almost confirmed though there are many more girls now in the fray.

    “There should be some changes because the banned athletes have come back. But, I think Anu Mariam, Tintu Luka and I will be there in the relay team,” said the Asian championship 400m silver medallist on the sidelines of the All-India Public Sector Meet here on Friday. “The fight will be for the other berths.”

    Poovamma, Tintu and Anu, along with Nirmala, won the Asian championship relay gold in Pune in July and they also ran in the world championship in Moscow in August.

    Exudes confidence
    The country’s fastest one-lap runner now, Poovamma is confident that India will get gold in the mile relay in the Asian Games in Incheon. But, she has a bigger goal.

    “We have been getting the relay gold almost every time, we are sure of it but my main aim will be in getting the individual 400m medal,” said the 23-year-old, who hails from Mangalore. “Commonwealth, I can expect one of the three (medals) and Asian Games, I can try for a gold.”

    She clocked her personal best, 52.75s in the recent Federation Cup in Patiala and hopes to bring it down to 51.50 year.

    “During training, I am much better than what I was last year so I think I can run much faster, probably my best,” she said. “I’ll try my best to break the national record (Manjeet Kaur’s 51.05 which came in 2004) but my target next year is 51.50 and I think it’s achievable.”

    There is talk in the circuit that Tintu could be running the 400m along with the 800m next year and Poovamma feels that the Kerala star’s presence will boost the one-lapper in a big way.

    “If Tintu takes up 400m seriously, it will push me to much faster timings. She’s a good athlete, she has been giving us good competition…when something like that happens it will help the sport in a big way.”

    More testing
    With athletics coming under close scrutiny, Poovamma says that there is a lot more testing these days. “Now, I am in the Patiala national camp and the NADA usually comes once in two months,” she said.

    “They are more strict than before. We don’t know when they’d come. After the Asian championship, I have been tested twice or thrice in Patiala in the last six months.”

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> Sport> Other Sports / by Stan Ryan / Kochi – December 20th, 2013

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    December 31st, 2013adminArts, Culture & Entertainment, Nature

    With New Year round the corner, many Bangaloreans have finalised plans to head for nearby hill stations and jungle resorts, to be away from the city’s din and bustle, to usher in 2014. Madikeri, Coorg, Kodaikanal, Nagarhole and Bandipur are the hottest picks.

    Bored with the same old ways to welcome new year, Bopanna K J, a city based HR professional, is all set to travel to Coorg this New Year’s Eve with few of his friends. He said “New Year Eve for me used to be either Goa or any of the pubs in Bangalore all these years.

    But this year I just want to get out of this commercial buzz and corporate things and want to check out for something different. We have already made the bookings at a resort and are leaving on December 31 afternoon.”

    Since Coorg is relatively closer to Bangalore, we need not take many days leave. It would be all green and we will have more time to spend amidst the nature, peace and tranquility, he further added.
    Yet another city resident Shiv Shankar is driving to Coorg on December 31 morning, where he will be joined by 35 of his family members and relatives.

    “The weather at Coorg is pleasant this time of the year and since it is not very from Bangalore, we chose that place to celebrate the New Year eve. Once we reach there we will also have ample time for the midnight preparation. We are just waiting for the day to enjoy the greenery and have a break.”

    Meanwhile, a group of four young IT professionals are heading to Bandipur Tiger Reserve. Navin, one among them, said, “As per our plans we will be leaving Bangalore on December 31 afternoon for a day-long stay at the jungle lodge, which we have booked about months ago. Then we will head towards Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary and return to city on January 1, 2014 night.”

    Many city residents are also heading towards Kodaikanal. Neelesh Bothra is all excited to celebrate the New Year’s Eve with his family at Kodaikanal.

    source: http://www.deccanchronicle.com / Deccan Chronicle / Home> News> Current Affairs / DC / by Luna Dewan / December 26th, 2013

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    Litchi grown in Kodagu during the off-season can be marketed across the country, says an expert.

    Litchi grown in Kodagu during the off-season can be marketed across the country, says an expert.

    Growers in Kodagu, faced with pest attacks on coffee and diseases in cardamom, orange, and banana crops, had something to look forward to during the Litchi Field Day organised by the Central Horticultural Experiment Station (CHES) at Chettalli in the district recently.

    About 50 progressive growers attended the event. A field visit to litchi orchards of the CHES in Chettalli gave the growers exposure to cultivation methods. CHES scientists apprised the growers about the soil requirements, fruiting, flowering pattern, and yield of litchi.

    P.C. Tripathi, head of the CHES, made a presentation on the prospects of litchi cultivation in Kodagu. He said litchi matures in the off-season, during November-December period, in Kodagu, unlike in traditional cultivation areas in north India where it matures during May and June. As this was the off-season, the fruits were in demand in the market. He told The Hindu that litchi grown in Kodagu during the off-season could be marketed across the country.

    The current price of litchi is around Rs. 150 a kg. Litchi cultivation had picked up in Kodagu in the last four years, he said. A grower had planted 900 plants in Chettalli area, he said.

    Income from litchi cultivation could augment the annual income of growers who were left to fend for themselves due to the volatility of coffee and pepper prices, Dr. Tripathi said. A small litchi tree could yield between 30 to 50 kg of fruits while bigger ones could yield more than 2 quintals, he said. India is ranked second in the world in litchi production, after China. In India, litchi is grown on nearly 75,000 hectares with a yield of 4.83 lakh tonnes. Bihar, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand and Uttarakhand are the major litchi growing States in the country. At the programme, growers raised queries on profitability and feasibility of litchi cultivation.

    Planters including N. Bose Mandanna, Col. Kumar (retd.), B.D. Manjunath, Vijay Devaiah and Shambhu Chengappa participated in the programme. Scientists of the CHES, Indian Institute of Spices Research, Appangala, near Madikeri; Coffee Board, Chettalli; and Krishi Vijnana Kendra, Gonicoppa, as well as government officials were present.

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> News> National> Karnataka / by K. Jeevan Chinnappa / Madikeri – December 26th, 2013

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    Actress Sai Tamhankar is all set to sizzle on-screen in a new ‘desi’ avatar in Harshvardhan Kulkarni’s Hindi film ‘Hunter’.

    (Sai Tamhankar )

    (Sai Tamhankar )

    The film which also features actors Radhika Apte and Gulshan Devaiah, will see the actress in a totally different role. She says, “I play a ‘sexy’ bhabhi in the film. And it’s sexy from character point of view. The character sketch is mature and very different. The film will release in April next year and I am looking forward to this one. This is my third Hindi film and I am really excited.”

    Sai was one of the first Marathi actresses to sport a bikini on-screen. The actress who is comfortable going bold on screen, made it clear that she has no issues experimenting with her look.

    source: http://www.articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / Home> Entertainment> Marathi / by Akshata Shetty, TNN / December 25th, 2013

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    Tennis – Sania says she has not played with him due to fallout of the Olympics controversy.
    Tennis – Indian tennis stars Rohan Bopanna and Sania Mirza say that they will play mixed doubles again together soon, although for now they are committed to playing with different partners at the Australian Open.

    In an interview to the India Today magazine, Sania says that the two have not played recently due to the London Olympics controversy.The two had played at the Hopman Cup a few years ago, representing India and nearly made the finals.

    “One of the main reasons has been the Olympics. It has messed up a lot of things, especially in terms of partnerships. After that Wimbledon performance, I decided to play with Mahesh because we were targeting to play together in London Olympics. That is where friendship helps; we understood each other’s decisions and found different partners. It was just wrong timing that we didn’t play together again. But we’ll certainly play again. There was never any conflict between us. In the beginning of the row, I didn’t say anything because it was between the boys. Rohan never mentioned me. But when my name was dragged into the debate, I had to speak up. It affected my relationship with Mahesh for a brief period but we soon got back to normal.”

    When asked about playing together again, Sania says, “As of now, we are committed to playing with other partners at the Australian Open. If we win with others, we might not get the chance. But we could well play the French Open or Wimbledon together. It’s all about what the situation would be then.”

    source: http://www.tennisworldusa.org / Tennis World / Home> Tennis Stories / by Prakash / December 21st, 2013

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    December 28th, 2013adminArts, Culture & Entertainment

    As many as 10,000 delegates and nearly 100 writers and thinkers will take part in the 80th All India Kannada Sahitya Sammelan to be held in Madikeri from January 7.

    Sammelan general secretary T P Ramesh told Express that the stage construction and stalls for bookstalls are getting ready at the Field Marshal K M Cariappa College ground.

    Of the estimated cost of `3.75 crore, the government has released `1 crore and an additional grant of `1 crore will be released soon. Ramesh said the remaining resources for the three-day event will be collected either in the form of money, material or sponsorships.

    He said MLC T John has promised 500 tins of oil which will cost `5 lakh, District Minister Dr H C Mahadevappa will supply 100 quintals of rice and planter from Bettageri Estate in Sunticoppa and patron D Vinod Sivappa has promised to supply coffee and tea leaves.

    Member of Parliament A H Vishwanath will supply 35 quintals of sugar and sponsor 9,000 bags which will be given to the delegates.

    Ramesh said nearly 400 book stalls will be opened in Madikeri and a souvenir will be brought out to commemorate the event.

    Ramesh said 28 sub committees have been formed for the Sammelan.

    To create awareness on the event from December 28, a publicity campaign with the slogan Sahithyada Nadige Halliyedege (taking literature towards villages) will be undertaken till January 5, he said.

    source: http://www.newindianexpress.com / The New Indian Express / Home> States> Karnataka / by B C Dinesh – Madikeri / December 26th, 2013

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    - Ramesh Nair/DNA Research N Archives

    – Ramesh Nair/DNA Research N Archives

    Top Indian shuttler Jwala Gutta, who on Monday won the women’s doubles title at the 78th Senior National Badminton Championships, said that she and her partner Ashwini Ponnappa “are the best”.

    The 2011 World Championship bronze medallist has had a tough year fighting a court case against the Badminton Association of India (BAI) for recommending a life ban on her for leading her side — Krrish Delhi Smashers — to almost forfeit a match during the Indian Badminton League (IBL).

    “I am extremely delighted. We are the best and there is no doubt about it now and we remain the best for quite some time now. I still need to get fitter and hope we continue to fight like this in every match. I enjoyed my match today (Monday),” said Jwala, who won her 10th national women’s doubles crown.

    Jwala’s entry was withdrawn by the BAI from a couple of tournaments due to the above mentioned case. Now with the title, she hopes to be back in the Indian team.

    “I don’t have to prove anything. I have my credentials behind me. The day me and Ashwini play in India at the national level, it is really difficult for others to compete against us. We are internationally more exposed and experienced and I am happy we played here,” added the Commonwealth Games gold medallist.

    “This is the last tournament of the year and to end it with a high note feels great. All eyes were on me and I am glad I lived up to it,” added the 30-year-old.

    source: http://www.dnaindia.com / DNA / Home> Sport> Report / Place:New Delhi, Agency:DNA / Monday – December 23rd, 2013

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    Tennis – Bopanna talks about reuniting with Aisam-Ul-Huq Qureshi as well
    Tennis – Indian tennis star Rohan Bopanna got a close shave at the hands of Bollywood actress Chitrangada Singh. The event was part of the “Unshaven is Unbathed” movement launched by Gillette.

    Meanwhile, speaking at the promo event, Bopanna talked about getting reunited with former partner and close friend Asiam-Ul-Huq Qureshi for the 2014 season on the ATP Tour.

    “It is great for me to get reunited with Qureshi and I am really looking forward to continue (the partnership). It is (also) a very positive sign and we can do extremely well (in next season, beginning January).”

    source: http://www.tennisworldusa.org / Tennis World / Home> Tennis Stories / by Prakash / December 18th, 2013

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    December 25th, 2013adminArts, Culture & Entertainment

    Versatile actor Arshad Warsi whose name has been synonym to his brilliant comic timing will soon be seen in BR Entertainment’s Mr. Joe B Carvalho.

    This particular film is quite close to Arshad’s heart as it is his long standing manager Mr. Bholaram Malviya’s debut film as a producer.
    We now hear that the actor who was recently shooting a song for the film in Coorg revealed his passion for Photography on the sets!!

    We went to the beautiful locales of Coorg to shot the song Ring Ring. Arshad was so mesmerized by the breath taking view that he started clicking pictures himself from a DSLR camera to capture the view. In fact he was enjoying so much that he later also captured the very beautiful Soha Ali Khan in the lens,” informed a source close to the team.
    Well, we are sure that Arshad was having a good time by capturing the memorable moments in his camera and his muse Soha too seems to be equally elated with the pictures clicked by him!!

    source: http://www.indiaglitz.com / IndiaGlitz Bollywood / Tuesday – December 17th, 2013

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    December 24th, 2013adminUncategorized

    Writer and foodie Kaveri Ponnapa’s face lights up whenever she speaks about the traditional  food of her forefathers, the warrior race—the Kodavas.

    Writer and foodie Kaveri Ponnapa’s face lights up whenever she speaks about the traditional food of her forefathers, the warrior race—the Kodavas.

    Writer and foodie Kaveri Ponnapa’s face lights up whenever she speaks about the traditional food of her forefathers, the warrior race—the Kodavas. She has endeavoured to capture the essence of Kodava cuisine by training and guiding the chefs of Dakshin, ITC Windsor hotel in Bangalore. Kaveri is all praise for the dedicated chefs and pronounces their Kodava food as almost as good as what’s cooked at home. And coming from her, that’s saying a lot.

    Kaveri has spent years studying and documenting the food and culture of the people of Coorg which is a tiny hilly district near coastal Karnataka and has a distinct history and customs quite unlike the rest of the state. She picked up recipes and tips from her grandmother and later from her mother-in-law and is a brilliant cook herself.

    The Coorgs or Kodavas migrated from the Eastern Mediterranean and are a fiercely proud and clannish community. They lived close to Mother Nature and lived on seasonal fruit and vegetables and grew paddy on the flatter lands and valleys as well as on the slopes. Their food is hence a rich mix of rather exotic forest produce and rice. Various items are made out of rice and broken rice as in other parts of South India like puttu and akki tari or broken rice flour which is used to make akki otis, a Coorg substitute for wheat flour rotis.

    The key flavour in every Coorg dish is that of sourness which is thanks to concentrated vinegar, the much loved signature kachampuli made from a fruit that is from the same family as kokum or from local bitter oranges, kaipuli. “These days there is a big demand for this unique vinegar and there is adulteration happening so one should buy it only from reliable sources,” cautions Kaveri.

    A largely meat and pork eating people with the ubiquitous Pandi (pork) curry being a much loved and best known Kodava dish. There are a lot of vegetarian dishes much to the delight of the uninitiated diner. The mushroom curry which is quite sweet and cooked in coconut could almost pass off as a Thai dish. Red pumpkin curry with grated coconut is delicious with rice flour rotis. The Kodavas make a variety of dishes from beans, double beans and wild greens which are tasty and subtly flavoured. Kaveri chose to be vegetarian for many years and would experiment and try out veggie recipes rather diligently.

    Trade has certainly influenced the cuisine and one fine example is that of ghee rice which is usually eaten with chicken curry and definitely has a strong resemblance to a rice dish in Maplah cuisine.

    The Kodavas were famed hunters informs Kaveri and they ate everything they hunted whether it was quails, partridges, venison. The monsoon was a long wet season so meats were dried and smoked and mushrooms which grow abundantly everywhere were dried and preserved. Almost every village household had a little kitchen garden where a variety of herbs, spices and vegetables like pumpkins, gourds, greens were grown, bamboo shoots and mushrooms thrived. “Foraging was a part of our culture and nothing went to waste,” says Kaveri.

    Preserving techniques like pickling and salting were common and are used even today. Apart from the sour flavour, unique to Coorg, many dishes have a touch of bitterness thanks to dry roasted and then powdered fenugreek seeds. Roasted rice grains are used as thickeners in some dishes.

    Kodavas do not have many desserts and dishes like banana fritters and steamed ripe jackfruit pulp served with grated coconut and a bit of jaggery are perfect. Kaveri has a website www.coorg.com with information on the history and cuisine of her people.

    source: http://www.newindianexpress.com / The New Indian Express / Home> LifeStyle> Food / by Sangeeta Cavale Radhakrishna / December 22nd, 2013

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