It is always a pleasure to get emails from visitors to this website expressing their association with the Nilgiris and/or Badagas many many years ago. In their views and opinions, we learn a lot. If one such visitor is a person who is comparatively ‘young at heart’ and wise by age, then we are in for pleasant surprises.
One such person is Henry Marriott from Australia. Henry is 80 years young.
I am fascinated about the suggestion he makes about ‘the statement a Seemay Gowda can make about Badaga ancestors in any function like what the aborigines do in Australia.
I thank him for permitting his emails to be published. – Wg Cdr JP
Henry Marriott writes :-I have been studying some articles on the Badaga peoples, who I am convinced are of European or Aryan descent as they belong to the R1a1 haplogroup (but it is necessary to assign the correct clade to these people as confirmation). It is thought that as Badaga means “people of the north” they are from Karnataka, and their language is a form of ancient Kannada. In fact it is believed they migrated from there in the fourteen hundreds, but now it is also believed that this could have been a second migration.
But there is also the belief that they are the indigenous people of the Nilgiris (or Nakku Betta to the Badagas). If this is the case, then as in In Australia at any function in Ketti (a hatti in the seemay of Mekkunaadu) the MC should commence proceedings with a statement in a form such as this:
“I would like to acknowledge the Badaga people who are the traditional custodians of Mekkunaadu and I would also like to pay respect to the elders past and present of the Badaga nation and extend that respect to other Aboriginal people present.”
I was educated in Ketti in the 1940s, and still have contact with St Georges School.
I was born in Sri Lanka and was educated at St Georges from 1940 to 1950. I then did further studies at MCC Tambaram . I then went to England where after National Service I qualified as a Chartered Accountant. I have now retired and live in Melbourne.
During my time in Ketti I had no contact with Badagas in school apart from school servants and the women who worked in the surrounding fields. We also attended at the Shantoor Temple to observe the Hubba and fire walking, which coincided with the Christian Palm Sunday (a week before Easter). I am now 80 years old.