News Views

I am not sure if you will agree, but I feel that the vernacular press in India is more fun than the English. Not that I am an expert on newspapers, but on the occasions that I read the stuff, I find that there is an underlying ‘lightness of being’ that is communicated in the vernacular, which is quite in contrast to the “serious, men at work, I am Atlas carrying the globe, dont mess with me, I tell you what to think” kind of approach of the English media.

Here is an example of a news item that I came across the other day in a Tamil newspaper. Its about birds. I am giving a rough translation below. I may be off in terms of translation accuracy, but you’ll get the general picture. Enjoy.

From Vizag to Tuticorin, the Pigeon Race

Tuticorin, March 28:

In a pigeon race held from Vizag to Tuticorin, a pigeon belonging to Mr Kannan created a record by flying the distance in nine days.

Tuticorin Waxing Moon Pigeons Race club has been organizing pigeon races from places like Vizhuppuram, Madurai, Vizag etc, to Tuticorin, for the last 23 years. In all these years, no pigeon has managed to make it from Vizag to Tuticorin.

This year, on 3rd March, at 7 am, the Vizag-Tuticorin pigeon race was flagged off. 16 pigeons, belonging to 4 people, participated. The pigeons were flagged off by referees Venancius and Ravichandran. The distance of around 1438 kilometers was completed first by a pigeon belonging to Mr Kannan, which arrived in Tuticorin on 12th at around 4 pm, thereby setting a record.

Thereafter, at around 4:50 pm, a pigeon belonging to Mr Anburaj, and then on 15th morning 6:50 am, a pigeon belonging to Mr Veluswamy flew in, to get the second and third prize respectively. 


3 Responses to “News Views”

  1. ramey Says:

    no offence intended…. but some how the punch was missing…

    i believe the vernacular press has to be read in its orginal form…typically with a cup of tea on a roadside eatout…


  2. Srinivasa Says:

    The principle, that the language press is more fun, is sound. We know this from Jasdev Singh’s hockey commentaries too esp. when you compare that with insipid and colorless commentaries delivered in Queen’s English by Surajit Sen. The same goes for football (or soccer as they call it here) commentaries in Spanish – they come closest to Jasdev Singh’s hockey commentaries. The sheer energy transcends all language barriers.

    As Ramey says, the original conveys something which English can’t no matter how good the translation. Even criminal cases would be more fun to read in Tamil.

  3. gkamesh Says:

    Ah yes Srini…I have warm memories of Jasdev Singhs commentaries….esp when the ball used to be taken from half line, and to the pacheez gaj ki rekha and then a pass into the Dee and then the full throated long-shout of “Aur yeh goaaaal….” and then at the end of the game, the war-whoop of “Bhaarat jeet gayaaa!”.

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