Kerala's tableau on women power steals the show at Republic Day parade

Kerala's 'Nari Shakti' float that impressed at the Republic Day parade on Kartavya Path in New Delhi on Thursday. Photo: Twitter/ @mygovindia

The power of Kerala women stole the show during the Republic Day parade on the Kartavya Path in the national capital on Thursday.

Kerala's tableau that was based on the theme, 'Nari Shakti' (women power) had at its forefront Karthyayani Amma, the now 100-year-old, who became the darling of Malayalis when she topped a literacy examination a few years ago.

The Cheppad-native had scored 98 out of 100 in the Aksharalaksham' qualifying examination orgnised by the State Literacy Mission in 2016.

She was feted with the Commonwealth of Learning certificate for excellence and also honoured by the state government.

The float in the shape of a 'Beypore Uru' (dhow) also had a statue of tribal singer Nanjiyamma holding the tricolour. Nanjiyamma's national award-winning song 'Kalakkatha' from the Malayalam movie 'Ayyappanum Koshiyum' was played from the float.

There were 24 women on the float, dressed in traditional Kerala attire, playing percussion instruments and dancing. Among them were eight dancers from the Irula Tribe of Attappady. It is the first time a tribal dance was used in a Republic Day float of Kerala.

'Shingari Melam' was performed by 'Kudumbashree' members of Mangattidam and Pappinisseri in the Kannur district. They had learned to play the percussion instuments as part of earning a living.

A mother-daugther duo also performed Kalaripayattu, Kerala's traditional martial arts, on the float.

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