The story of Badettu family will not be complete without focusing on one of the mildest personalities borne into this family, the late Ananthrama . He was the twin brother of Kollam Padmanabha and it was amazing that these brothers showed a temperament and disposition remarkably similar to each other. He was famously called "Ginda" though I do not know why he was being referred to by the above common name. For a while I thought Ginda might be referring to his plumb and short physique but this could not be the reason because his twin brother was also equally plumb. Now I realize that he was called Ginda because he always drank tea from a "Gindi" a large utensil as he wanted large quantity of tea whenever he wished to have tea! May be I am wrong!
Many of us do not know who is elder of the two but it is believed that Ananthrama was delivered of half an hour before Padmanabha and therefore former is the elder brother. One thing is sure, that is both were gentle human beings rarely seen in an angry mood. Interestingly Ananthrama was assigned to the Alleppey operations while Padmanabha got into Kollam business. Since his wife and family were based in Badettu House he used to shuttle between Alleppey and Padubidri. While at Alleppey he used to stay at the Hotel and his duty was linked to that of Subbraya and at any given time only one of the two would be in Alleppey. In contrast to the stern disposition of Subbraya, Ananthrama had a mild manner, never shouting at any one and even children used to like him for his somber manners. With Subbraya he was the co-owner of a property at Chananakkavu in Alleppey which was sold of when they left the town once for all after settling their business share.
Interestingly Ananthrama married Janaki, his aunt's daughter in the Kinnitu family whose house was located near the Badettu House. This is one of the two alliances Badettu family had with families of Badettu Narnappya's sister and Badettu Radhakka's brother's family. It may be recalled that Saraswathi, wife of Gopalakrishna, the last son of Narnappaya was the daughter of the brother of Radhakka, Venkata Bhaya. Orignal family of Janaki had such illustrious connections with people like Mukkanna who was a legendary hotelier in Madras. Though both Subbraya family and Ananthrama family were staying at Badettu House for quite some time, former shifted to Karkata House at Admar later which was the ancestral home of late Paddakkaya. It was more or less understood that Ananthrama would inherit the house eventually and it was a tribute to the wisdom of Narnappaya that no inheritance problem ever cropped up after his time with all other sons cooperating in keeping the house as a heritage center for the entire family. Thanks are due to Ananthrama and his sons that they treated all their relations with kindness and good hospitality whenever they visited the place. Even to day Badettu House, though not structurally or aesthetically sound, still evokes respect and admiration for the great pioneers, Narnappaya and Radhakka.
How remarkable it is that Anthrama's eldest son Srinvasa, popularly called Seena was able to achieve an exalted position as Professor of Chemistry in Manipal after obtaining his Master's degree from Banarese Hindu University through sheer hard work and determination. Anathrama was the father of 3 sons and 4 daughters but it was unforunate that one of his daughters, Sushhela passed away at relatively young age due serious illness. Recently it was reported that the second daughter Mandakini also passed away about a few days ago at Pavancha. Other two surviving daughters are well settled with their families in Padubidri and Belappu near Kaup. Seena, after retiring from KMC Manipal is settled down in Chennai with his son Satish who is a senior executive in the Hyubdai Car company. His second son Ranga is presently in Kochi working as a senior executive in BTH hotel of late Govinda Chikkappaya. The third son Cheeya who worked in the Alleppey Sri Krishna Bhavan for a number of years got back to Padubidri and with his noble wife Rema is managing the property on behalf of his brothers and sisters.
Interestingly all the fourth generation off springs in the Ananthrama house hold are settled down in life in a reasonably good way. What is amazing is that Sriram, son of Cheeya achieved the incredible in getting an engineering degree recently under trying conditions that prevailed in Badettu House during the last few years. It is a matter of pride for all of us that he is well placed professionally working for an MNC at Bangalore. He along with Satish, son of Seena are the two engineers in Ananthrama family. Seen'a daughter is also an engineer working in Mumbai as a faculty member in one of the engineering colleges there.
Many may be wondering as to how Seena, the eldest in this family is able to fulfill all the responsibilities inherited by him in looking after the Naga Bhana, Bhootha Gudi, commitments to Padubidri temple and other related customary practices passed on from Narnappaya. He does visit Padubidri regularly to carry out all the duties cast on him including conducting poojas and other functions which were part and parcel of Badettu family traditions. Even to day the three brothers serve panaka to hundreds of devotees during the annual Chariot Festival in Padubidri Mahalingeshwara temple in the month of March, a practice started by Narnappaya decades ago! They have also made arrangements for conducting regular pooja inside the house as well as at the Bhana daily without fail whenever all of them are out of town. It is hoped that Seena and his brothers will be able to restore Badettu House to its old glory and every member of Badettu family will have opportunity to visit, stay and experience the thrill of being close to the souls of all their ancestors regularly.
Answer to the last Quiz
The only surviving second generation member in Badettu family is KollamLakshmi Chikki who is approaching 90 now and enjoying good health for her age. She is now in Udupi visiting Kicha for about three months and I had the previlege of speaking to her just yesterday. Let us all pray that she outlives all her contemporaries and cross the hundred year mark without much hiccup.
Quiz for the present Blog
What is the connection between the three Rams-Sethuram, Jayaram and Raghuram? What is their relationship?
I feel terribly depressed to recall the sad demise of Mandakini, second daughter of Anantrama Chikkappa, recently, a few days ago at Pavancha, near Padubidri. It was a terrible shock as I met her on April 28 2013 when she came to participate in the obsequies function of lete Paddakkaya at Raghavendra Muth in Uchila. She was looking perfectly normal and healthy and cheerfully invited me to visit her home at Pavancha. Very sad indeed. Let us pray for her soul to rest in peace.