January 27, 2004 

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Appu master, Balaramapuram, Thiruvananthapuram

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For 53 years he has been weaving unperturbed by the financial uncertainty that looms large over his days.  Appu is a master weaver of Balaramapuram, once considered the Manchester of Kerala. 

The entire village calls him Appu master affectionately.  He is also the best technician around.  “He will identify even intricate problems with the looms at a glance itself,” says Komala Kumar of Kandloom Weavers’ Development Society.  “The handloom material he weaves stand out in its perfection.  He is, indeed, a master craftsman,” says Kumar.  “If he is around, every loom will run smoothly.  It is as if the looms and Appu master have some secret understanding between them,” chips in Shantha, one of his students and now his colleague.

Appu strongly believes that weaving is a divine art.  “Only those with genuine interest will be able to weave a cloth into perfection,” he says.  According to him, each handloom product is unique as it reflects the personality of the weaver.

Even after all these years he is yet to own a loom.  Perhaps no wonder, his sons have shown no inclination to take up weaving – a fact that hurts him.  But his daughters are showing interest and he finds solace in that.

The financial hardships are nothing compared to the fulfillment one gets from weaving, he says and declares, “I will continue to weave till my last breath.  I want to die weaving.”

Appu at work


Courtesy: Cithara Paul, The New Indian Express, December 13, 2003

Contributed by: Administrator


"Want makes strife betwixt man and wife."