“Yellow”, “purple”, “green”. Deepa is talking about the plan to dress up for the Kerala Piravi (birth of Kerala which is celebrated on November 1) celebrations in her college and there is no doubt on what the dress will be.
They will all be wearing cream-coloured Kerala saris and the debate is only about what the colour of the border should be.
“Even during Onam celebrations, we have umpteen choices to dress up but for Kerala Piravi, the gorgeous sari with golden zari is the only option.
I am sure the beauty of a Malayali girl is best revealed in the Kerala sari or mundum neriyathum,with some gold ornaments and jasmines completing the look,”she says.
The traditional dress is surely a sight to die for but what do the youngsters think about the State’s progress? “Conditions in Kerala are pitiable, with pot-holed roads and incessant hartals. There is also a culture of envy among Malayalis which gets on my nerves,” she grumbles.
As Kerala celebrates its 56th Kerala Piravi on Tuesday, there is certainly a sense of dissatisfaction among the youth. “People say I look cool in mundu and juba, hence I love to wear it every now and then.
I don’t find any reason to celebrate because of the rising rate of crimes,” says Kochiite Rohit Nair.
Model and actor Hilton Jacob considers Kerala a paradise on earth and believes that our attire reflects our tradition.
He also believes that the State lags behind in development. He says: “Everything is in the hands of politicians. Of late, there are some positive changes.”
Vinny Vijayan from Palakkad believes that a majority of the youth is apolitical and indifferent towards culture and traditions of Kerala. “Despite being educated, about which we brag about all the time, they choose not to have an opinion on most matters.”
Shailesh Ambasht, a north Indian youngster who was born and brought up in Kerala, on the other hand is all praise for Malayali youth for respecting traditions including dress.
“I have noticed is that southern youngsters are more respectful towards traditional attire even though wearing western clothes is catching up everywhere,” he points out.
Agreeing with him is Keerthi Prakasham, about our traditions since we are faced with westernisation. “At the same time, you cannot expect people to wear mundu and Kerala sari everyday.
” Agreeing with her is Keerthi Prakasham, who is studying journalism in Chennai. “When we go outside the State, we come across people who say Malayalis are a worthless class and also those who praise Kerala as a model State. I for one is happy to be a Malayali.”