Team Karma Kerala took a day off from its busy schedules to celebrate the festival of Onam, the largest of its kind in Kerala with all the traditional flair and grandeur.
The day started off on a busy note as the whole team got themselves divided into groups to get the flowers ready to decorate the elaborate floral carpet. The ladies and gents of Karma Kerala upheld the traditional taste in their attires by dressing themselves up in the traditional Kerala dress.
There were enough time for everyone to tuck in a few banter and photo shooting sessions as the day progressed. A traditional Onam feast was served on plantain leaves before everyone exchanged onam wishes of a prosperous and happy onam that extends to over four days of fun and fiesta for millions of Malayalees all over the world.
Elephants have always been poster boys for Kerala tourism. In a novel attempt to lure foreign tourists and elephant lovers, the Kerala forest department officials have come up with a hard to resist package.
Two persons can spend a day with an elephant at the Konni Eco-Tourism Centre for INR 2,000. Those who avail the package will get an irresistible deal including a rare chance to feed or bathe the elephant apart from enjoying a safari.
The tourists can visit the elephant camp and can even try their hands in giving these gentle giants a thorough scrub and wash at the bathing ghat in the Achenkovil River. The tourists can also take home a few photographs to keep these priceless moments fresh all their life time. There are currently five elephants at the Konni elephant camp where the tourists can spend around six hours with the elephant. The revenue will be utilized for the maintenance of the camp.
Spread over 7 acres, the Konni Eco-Tourism Centre has many facilities including audio-visual library, elephant museum, restaurant and a children’s park.The third phase of the development of the Konni Eco-Tourism Project at a project cost of over 45 lakh is in the pipeline. The projects in this phase include landscaping work in the elephant camp and improvement of the elephant museum.
So in case you are planning a special gift for someone special think beyond the run of the mill gift ideas and plan a day out with the jumbos. It will surely be something priceless not just for the recipient but also for those who gift it!
Karmakerala is moving to a spacious and trendy office premises on the 5th floor of Nucleus mall tomorrow (20th December). All are excited about being in the beehive of activities and in the centre spot of the Cochin city.
Apart from an irresistible range of cafes, eateries and shopping outlets, the fact that Nucleus is all set to get a multiplex adds on to the excitement of everyone in office. There are ample options to unwind and relax after a long day at the work stations. From a relaxing fish pedicure to an interesting 6D movie experience to a shop till you drop option at the many outlets- the options are truly ours once we are there.
As we move on aiming for bigger and greater opportunities, Karma Kerala wishes all their patrons and well wishers both in the real and virtual world a merry Christmas and a very happy New Year ahead.
The biggest bane of Kerala is the appalling conditions of its roads that remain in a non motorable state all round the year. Pot holes appear as soon as the tarring is completed leaving the users badly grounded. However, there seems to be some hope for this nagging problem in the form of cotton nets that can be used for reinforcing the roads. The water logged areas of Kuttanad have already made use of this product in strengthening its roads and bunds. The project, successfully implemented in association with the Kerala Industrial and Technical Consultancy Organisation in different wards of Edathua last year is primarily aimed at preventing soil erosion.
Soil erosion is rampant in Kuttanad region where floods occur twice a year, which wash off the roads and bunds. The new techniques is expected to strengthen the roads by keeping the soil on both sides of the road tightly wrapped. Recently a stretch of road from Edathua to Puvakkad was constructed using the technique and it is expected to stay in good condition for a minimum of four years.
The cotton nets are first spread on the embankments of the road , which are vulnerable to soil erosion. The nets are then fixed to the soil using bamboo and grass and tree saplings are planted, which keep the net tightly fixed. The need of the hour is to ensure high quality roads, which has a vital role in the economic development of Kerala. These indigenous methods would indeed go a long way in offering cost effective solutions for making the roads stable and long lasting.
A shouting competition- In all probability, you might not have heard anything like this before in Kerala!! The brain child of Sholto, our boss from the UK, who wanted to try it out as a small experiment to find out why Kerala ladies almost always talk in muffled tones, this interesting shout out competition was held in our office at Karma Kerala. The ladies and the gents teams were drawn up and everything was well set for a high decibel shout and screech. The winning team would have been the one that made the maximum sound.
Obviously the all girls team of 17 was not a match for the men’s team and the ladies were clearly outclassed in the first round of the shouting competition. In the second round in a hotly fought contest 15 ladies shouted their lungs out as loud as they could against a truncated men’s team of just 5 and even then, the men won by a clear edge. When a combined round of both men and women was done, the sound tapered as it reached the female side. In this melee, a few anxious faces did came out from the adjacent buildings to see what it was all about.
At the end of it all, it was concluded that the women in Kerala have chosen to be soft spoken and quiet due to an array of social and cultural factors when they are outside the comfort zones of their homes. However, I feel that to measure the real power of the female vocal chords, one might have to step into their homes unexpectedly when all the male voices of the house will be drowned in the clamor of the females:). Share your views on this interesting topic !
Kabini, one of the most popular wildlife destinations of Karnataka was hand picked as the destination for our annual leisure trip not by chance but after a meticulous research and ground work by the seasoned hands of the Karma Kerala travel desk. At the end of it all, we are happy that it paid off by offering us one of the most beautiful holidays ever. Kabini is 3 hours drive from Wayanad and it retains its pristine charm even today. The lush green landscape surrounding a large picturesque lake and fantastic sightings of large herds of elephants, makes it a favorite choice for wild life enthusiasts.
It is only 80km away from Mysore and comprises the south-eastern part of Nagarhole National Park, now named as Rajiv Gandhi National Park. Spread over an area of 247 square miles, it is considered one of the best wildlife parks of India, famous for elephants , tigers, wild buffaloes and spotted deer among others. The landscape around is breathtaking and is made of gentle slopes and shallow valleys dotted with grass lands, swamps and deciduous trees.
In case you are looking for a quiet holiday away from the hustle and the bustle of the cities, plan a trip to Kabini, where time stands still. Apart from the occasional rumblings of the cars and jeeps ferrying the tourists, Kabini is secretive and silent. Enjoy a tryst with nature, tuck in a banter session with your friends around the bonfire, set out on a paddle boat or break free from the mundane. No matter whatever you choose to do in Kabini, the bottomline reads that you will go back recharged and refreshed, ready to take life head on!
Are the bogus realtors in Kerala pushing up the land value beyond the reach of ordinary people?
Soon on the heels of Apple a day properties scam that siphoned off the hard earned money of the investors and offered nothing in return, a few other real estate companies have also joined this infamous league of builders. It goes without saying that considering the small size of Kerala and its land constrains, flats are the most feasible housing options to cater to the population of Kerala. However the flat boom has also let in many unscrupulous elements with no track record or good will into this industry .
Most of these fly by night operators who are only interested in amassing wealth do not care for the welfare of the investors. These massive land deals have pushed up the land prices of Kerala to unbelievable levels.The ground reality is that the ordinary mortals of this State find it difficult to buy even a small patch of land these days and dare not dream of a roof over their heads!
Let’s admit it- Kerala is a land of real estate companies and land deals. Every other person you meet on the road could be a realtor agent in some form or the other. From full time land deal brokering to part time activities, land deals pump money into many a kitty in Kerala. They could be an auto driver,a petty shop owner or a vegetable vendor, however they’ll slip into the role of a cheeky broker the moment he sniffs a prospective client in you and pockets a handsome brokerage in every deal irrespective of his role in the deal! Shady land deals and forest and water front encroachments happen at an alarming pace and with no fool proof monitoring system in place, Kerala is slipping into the tight grips of the land mafia.
These pictures say it all!! These patches of marshy land where one of the apartment complexes of apple a day property were to have come up would be better suited for stilt houses or a fish farm may be. It is high time that we pulled the plugs to stop this menace. Make sure that you check the credentials of the builders and their track record before leaving your hard earned money at their desks. Rather than the lure for money and profits , let credibility be the deciding factor while you pick up the builders because this is the only way you can put an end to this series of real estate scams rocking this tiny State , which is overburdened with more flats and apartments than it can possibly sustain!
Padmanabhaswamy Temple in the State capital of Thiruvananthapuram hit the headlines when a massive treasure that is valued at over 1 lakh Crore was discovered from its secret vaults, making it the richest temple in the world, displacing the world famous Tirupati Balaji Temple in Andhra Pradesh to the second position.
The treasure included ancient ornaments, crown, bow and utensils of various shapes and sizes made of pure gold. A statue of Krishna embedded with precious stones, which is priced at 5000 crores and a 18 feet gold chain of the deity were some of the other items found in the secret chambers (Nilavara) of Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple.
17 kg of gold coins dating back to the period of India East Company, gold in the form of strings, 2.5 kg gold collar, heaps of gem encrusted ‘aval’, thousands of pieces of antique jewellery studded with diamonds and gold vessels were some of the other items. The value of articles stocked in the vaults of the temple, managed by the royal family of the erstwhile Travancore princely state is beyond imagination. According to noted historian Dr M G S Narayanan, Padmanabhaswamy temple dating back to the 9th Century will have several centuries old priceless antiques.
The seven-member panel appointed by the Supreme Court of India has been entrusted of making an inventory of the assets that had remained hidden for over 150 years. The temple has six secret vaults and two of them had not been opened for the past one-and-a-half century. A major chunk of the estimated treasure was stored in the cellar, coded as A. The preparation of inventory of another chamber B will be taken up later and when the full list is compiled it is expected that the total worth of the valuables will reach unimaginable levels. The news has stirred up a lot of interest in both the social media and print media not only within the country but also in foreign countries where many newspapers like Khaleej Times have kept their readers updated on this treasure discovery.
Now that the hidden treasure is out in the open, debates are on as to what should be done with this humongous amount of wealth. The chief minister has said that the temple treasures will be preserved as it is and high tech surveillance and fool proof security measures will be provided to protect the wealth .Historians too opine that as the measureless wealth belongs to the Lord, it is legally and morally wrong to take the money out of the temple. However, there are apprehensions whether these priceless valuables that escaped the eyes of the marauding plunderers of the past will remain safe in its original abode and will be preserved for posterity? The lid of one of the best kept secrets is blown away and to safeguard this massive wealth from the greedy eyes all over will make it a Herculean task for all concerned!