Our Visit to Sri Lanka

I told earlier that, I encouraged my younger brother to write for IAS/IFS. Fabian got into the Indian Foreign Service and was posted to different places. Wherever he served, we also went. When our father was alive we went along with him. Our father was very broad-minded and I should say he enjoyed the visit to Sri Lanka. Fabian was posted as the Deputy High Commissioner to Sri Lanka. Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson was the High Commissioner. He became the Governor of West Bengal later.

In Sri Lanka we went to the Christian Seminary in Kandy. We had a special connection with the Seminary because of many of our priests who served in our Udayamperoor Church were trained here. Of this place, special mention should be made of Reverent Father Peter Paravara. Father Paravara was a brilliant organizer and he changed the spiritual and religious outlook of the area.

A large library travelled with him and the Hindus, Muslims and Christians of other sects in Udayamperoor became his close friends and readers of his library. According to Sree Narayana Guru the greatest wealth is “vidhya” or knowledge and this is received by reading books. He also liked the philosophy of Sree Narayana Guru. Our father was a good friend of Father Peter Paravara. Peter Paravara was also simultaneously the manager of the Puthiyakavu School from where my father retired as a head master. We stayed for 6 months in Sri Lanka.

At that time massacre of the communists in Sri Lanka was undertaken with a vengeance by the Sri Lankan Government. Prabhakaran, the leader of the communists, was a Tamilian communist settled in Sri Lanka.

Tobacco from Jafna was the best tobacco sold at fancy prices in Travancore and at cheaper rates in Cochin streets. My father had the habit of using tobacco and spitting into “kolamby” but he had long ago overcome it. We had important visitors in Sri Lanka; K.P. Hormis, the Chairman of the Federal Bank and father-in-law of my brother came to Sri Lanka and stayed with us. He enjoyed the stay a lot because his daughter Usha, wife of Fabian was there along with their Children Amal and Anoopa. My wife, Leela also enjoyed the trip to Sri Lanka. In the stay in Colombo, I did not take my wife to dangerous places I dared to visit.

Father Peter Paravara was very careful about his health and constant exercise and yoga had given him a beautiful body which priests and non-priests would envy. Once I had unintentionally opened the bathroom and I saw Father Peter Paravara sitting there naked with Ayurvedic “kozhambu” all over his body. With apologies I closed the door, the beautiful body which he possessed still remains in my mind. Peter Paravara predecessor was Father Puthussery who used to attract ladies possessed by the devil. Father Paravara discontinued this practice of exorcism because he believed that it was all psychological problems and he advised the ladies young and old who used to come to Father Louis Puthussery possessed by devil to eat good food and pray to God

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