Tamil is a mesmerizing language; there are words that are to be pronounced lightly - the tongue just romancing the top of the palate, and there are words that emanate menacingly through the teeth denoting aggression, the list is long albeit alluring. It is this passion for the language that ...

By Manjula Ramakrishnan (Contributor)

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Published: Wed 19 May 2004, 2:10 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 12:57 AM

has driven a group of aficionados of Tamil, headed ably by Professor Solomon Pappiah, former Head of the Post Graduate Department of Tami, The American College, Madurai, Tamilnadu to tour - from hither to yon of not just India, but the globe - promoting a unique art form called 'Patti Mandram' or the debating forum.

And Solomon Pappiah has his unique style of carrying the debates forward with his tongue in cheek, witty comments, having the audience in splits, never letting a fierce competitive spirit amongst his participants get the better of the pure unadulterated joy of debating. And during the course of his debate we witness a fair and unbiased arbitrator, his final summation and verdict giving us a glimpse of his astute and erudite counsel. And cleverly through his debates, Solomon Pappiah conveys social messages - yet never once delivering solemn homilies - for that is the brilliance of the professor who can discuss issues threadbare without operating from a moral high ground.

With several titles to his credit - Kalai Mamani, Iyal Chelvam, Solvendar, Nagai Chuvai Navalar amongst others, Solomon Pappiah has travelled widely, mesmerizing many a literary and debating forum. His appearances on television - Sun, Vijay, Raj TV and various Doordarshans, are awaited eagerly and from April 1997 to this day he has been highlighting the nuances of Thiruvalluvar's Thirukkural in Thinam oru Thirukkuraal for Sun TV, thus taking the message of good thinking and healthy living to the masses. His books Thirukkural Urai, Urai Malargal, Sindhanai Kathir and Pattukottai Oru Paarvai are veritable sources of knowledge.

Dubai has a treat in store, for the witty professor is to perform with his troupe members on the 27th of this month at the Al Nasr Leisureland, Ice Rink with the chosen topic for debate being 'Helping others is a source of joy or jeopardy?' and the sheer content of the topic raises the chortle index.

Sharing the honours with him that day will be S. Raja - a banker by profession, Subramanian - another Tamil professor, Dr. Soundaravalli and Professor Rajaram - both heads of Tamil Department in various colleges, Professor Ramachandran heading the English Department and Ms. Gandhimathi a retired teacher from Madurai but with a fiery passion for the language.

The programme is being organised by Ramani Events and the main sponsor of the event is Western Union. Tickets for the event are available at Chennai Bazaar, Madras Vegetarian Restaurant and other leading South Indian restaurants or call 050-4572126.

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