Sunday, June 06, 2010


Guess I'm not mistaken if i claim that mallus all around the world buy Malayala Manorama for its obituary page. AS the paper which enjoys the highest circulation in the state, it is the most sought after paper to announce death. People forget their political and religious affiliations when death happens in the family. Manoram it is – and no other paper.

Recently my father- in -law passed away, and we too made a bee line for the Malayala Manorama office. Now, the obituary column is free of cost. When we get a service free, it comes with certain conditions. Such conditions often reflect the soul of the paper. We see the paper in its true colours. The inherent prejudices and convictions come into play in laying down these conditions. Cos no money is obtained from this service, and so we will have it our way is the attitude. That’s when you catch an organization with its pants down.

I had the occasion to see this popular daily in this not so pretty condition when we were told the terms of the free space in the obituary column. The dead person’s sons in law’s family name can be mentioned but not the daughters –in-laws'!!! Thus it’d be like this: Sons in laws are Dominic Saviour Pattalakkad, Martin de Pores Kuthirakkad, Mani Kurien Kazhuthakad. Daughters in laws are, Sally, Shiny, Reesamol and Ammimni!!!!!???? L

If this is not sexism, what the hell is? As though the daughters in law had no identity whatsoever before they acquired the family name through alliances with the sons of the person whose death is being announced!

Can Malayala Manorama give an explanation for this shameful outdated mindset? Or is the paper trying to live up to its nickname, THE GRAND MOTHER OF KOTTAYAM?

Only, grandmothers these days are more updated in their thinking than Malayala Manorama!.


  1. Welcome back ma'm, after a short gap. Can see the reason for your hibernation. My condolences.

    Well, this is another 'surprise' colour of Manorama brought to light. This is going from bad to worse, what a shame to hold this name as the most popular daily of Kerala! 100% literate Kerala, huh..

  2. Well I don't really blame MM for this, the whole of Kerala is pretty much like this. I went to a "nice" restaurant & found that the loo for men was a WC and an Indian style for women!What a shame considering there were so many elderly women at the restaurant. If this isn't undiluted sexism then what is?

  3. Stumbled upon your blog by chance, and I don't seem to remember from where. But I'm glad I did.

    Male chauvinism is so deep rooted in Kerala, it sucks. Didn't think even the media is part and parcel of this dirty sexist attitude. Nice post though!

  4. My condolences for your loss, Kochuthresiamma. It must be very hard on you and your family.

    Question about the obituaries: how do they manage the notices for the Nairs, especially the aristocratic ones? Do they leave out the tharawad names of the females?

  5. Condolences, madam.
    I think there are two reasons why this happens. First, ours is a sexist society and newspapers are a reflection of what the society is. Even sub editors who are women are prone to do the same thing out of habit while handling a report (I am not speaking about obit pieces alone). The second reason is pressure on space, though it is in no way an excuse.

    I have forwarded the link to your blog to a friend in Malayala Manorama hoping he will bring it to the notice of those in charge of its editorial affairs.

  6. Interestingly Kerala Kaumudi does not have this prejudice against women. It's a far superior paper to Manorama in many other ways too (speaking as someone from Trivandrum).

  7. really? what kind of policy is that. have space limits, but this? I read the list online but never noticed.
    teacher, '100%literate' does not mean uplifted/learnt/decent.
    sorry to hear the loss in the family. God bless

  8. thanks all for condolences. and responses.
    Venugopal sir, thanks. trust you to take it up.
    Sujatha, interesting question. lemme take a look at today's manorama

  9. Sorry I am late- My condolences to you and your family. This is really an intriguing form they use in doing the obituaries. I think space is not the issue- definitely it is a priority they give to the males. It will be interesting to see if your friend who forwarded the article will get a response from the paper.


  11. Condolences to you.. though very late I think...

    MCP's at their worst.. never knew it was so, though MM is losing in many ways than this..

    but I think the new generation is shedding this attitude and I see it while reading blogs from the younger gen of Mallu's... maybe it is bcoz the girls are no longer ready to take the s@@t :)

  12. My condolences for your loss.

    I hope to see some response and a positive response after they receive the forwarded mail.

  13. Condolences for your loss.

    I was never even aware that there is a news paper as such. Weird sexism.

  14. Very strange indeed but have you sought MM's viewpoint by forwarding this post to them in their Letters to the editor column?

  15. Very strange indeed. I suggest you to send this post as 'letter to the editor' and see if they clarify.

  16. @ SR Ayyangar
    venugopal sir has already forwarded it to someone in manorama. reg sending this post to the editor, well-it wont see the light of day

  17. what you blamed is not reasonable

  18. Dear Kochuthressia,
    Your question is "If this is not sexism, what the hell is?"
    Is it sexism? It is discrimination you can say.MM does have an explanation for that. Is it the style Christians follow after mrg. Forget the daughters and transplant them to another fmly. May be that. MM will explain that. Get clari from them.
    Suresh KC

  19. I you check Manoram newspaper you will find this allegation is absolutely false

  20. Has anyoen checked manorama's obit page? This is one typical example of how people believe ruomours without checking.

    I have a Manorama paper befoer me and I chcked it properly. I found that this allegation is absolutely FALSE.

    tehy have 'makkal' and 'marumakkar' and I didn't find sex descriminaton there.

    Check for yourself

  21. @ ravi george
    at the time i posted this blog, what i claim in it is absolutely true. after all I put the obituary and I was told that daghters in laws family name will not be put. my family name was not put as they told me it was the policy. i dont need to check. this is not hearsay.
    look at the obit arounf the 25th of april(that's when i put the obit.) why on earth should i make false claims?
    the policy might have changed subsequently. i have noticed that of late manorama has changed in the classified ad sectin too where they used to earlier post certain shocking ads.
    probably cos of the change at the top.

  22. Ginu Tharakan George5:48 PM, December 18, 2010

    its sad to see such pseudo western fecal verbiage from "new generation mallus". Traditions and Social constructs are there for relevant reasons. Apparently this escaped the attention of most of your ilk here. Yes men are the head of the family and a family is known by its male inherited name. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. In a proper Christian household, daughter-in-laws are part of the same family as they are now married to this household. Son-in-laws come under extended family almost always hence their family name is different because they do not belong to this family heritage. Women get married and go off to their new household and this is their new identity. Call it "sexism" or whatever you will, thats the law and so it will stay. Somebody here mentioned that girls today wont take "shyt" but thats just an indication of spineless men in the household or too much western propaganda brainwashing youth today. These ideas of political correctness and equality is a bunch of bollocks. Learn to embrace traditions, customs and reality. They have been there for centuries and have brought stability. Accept it.

  23. Manormana is waste newspapper, has no value news,before reading the paper, people use it as toilet napkin and another use you can see all advertisements,then cut it into rolls, keep it in your toilets.

  24. When Ginu talked about embracing traditions, does it mean that just because tradition and Christian law accepts man as superior to women, we should follow it blindfolded? How could we, even by mistake, think that a woman feels quite comfortable in this existing situation, where she is just a property to be married off, does not have a house of her own, and just needs to adjust to the in-law's household and accept it as her own? Yes, it is tradition and customs, but that does not make it not-sexist. What we boast of in India is a sexist culture and tradition, Christianity, for that matter is too much sexist. Press and newspapers standing for and voicing social concerns is practice of a bygone era these days - forget about a mainstream and successful business enterprise like MM!


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