JEDDAH, 14 April 2007 — Maithri, an organization of Keralite expatriates in Jeddah, celebrated its 11th anniversary on Thursday evening by holding a fabulous cultural program at the premises of the Indian Consulate.
Consul General Ausaf Sayeed inaugurated Maithreeyam 2007 with a brief and inspiring speech in which he commended the office-bearers of Maithri not only for fostering a culture of friendship among Keralites but for building bridges with other communities as well.
K.G. Guna, an academic and intellectual, in his felicitation address dwelt on the need for efforts to cultivate a culture of social bonding. He illustrated the pitiable state of the family in the fast-moving modern life and urged parents to find time to listen to their children and establish better relations with them.
Raman Madhu, Maithri’s president, who chaired the function, said his organization was also active in extending humanitarian aid to the needy and poor.
The organization honored Abrar Ahmed and Muhammad Husain, students of the International Indian School, Jeddah, who scored top marks in Grade X CBSE examinations in 2006. The highlight of the evening was a musical rendition of Poothappattu by famous poet and playwright Edasseri Govindan Nair. Edasseri is a foremost poet who led Malayalam poetry to the fascinating vistas of modernism and social awareness. His work epitomizes the Malayalee culture by depicting the good, the bad and the ugly of modern Kerala.
Poothappattu is a song about motherhood. Pootham is a folklore idol that makes an appearance in every household during the harvest season. In his song, Edasseri has woven a myth around the folklore dancer to creatively illustrate the power of motherhood to turn a ferocious bloodthirsty deity into one of love and peace.
The musical program held the audience that packed the consulate grounds spellbound until the curtains were drawn. Another musical presentation took the audience to the good old days of rural life in Kerala, which is fast disappearing in the face of rapid urbanization.
Solo songs by Jasmine Madhu, Lincy Baby and others enthralled the crowd. Dance performances by young Maithri artists also won applause. The event culminated in a Qawwali concert by Jamal Pasha and team.
A raffle draw was also held during the event in which lucky winners were given prizes worth several thousands of riyals. Jasmine Madhu and Khaled Palayat served as anchors for the program.
George Varghese, general secretary, welcomed the guests.