Vadakara, which was a part of old Kadathanadu, is famous as the land of Kalaris. Kalari is the traditional martial art form of Nothern
Kerala. Thacholi Othenan, Aromal Chekavar, Unniyarcha -the legends of Kalari-are familiar to the inhabitants of Vadakara through
Vadakkanpattu. Meenakshi Gurukkal is the Unniyarcha of Vadakara now.
Let's go through her story....
Aged 70. Daughter of P.R.Kururppu Gurukkal and wife of Late Raghuti Gurukkal, now all in all of Kadathanadan Kalari Sangham. She started
practicing Kalari at the age seven from her father. After ten years, she stopped it like other girls in the region.
Marraiage and re-entry
She got married to Raghuti Gurukkal, who was running Kadathanadan Kalari Sangham. It was raghuti Gurukkal who encouraged her to practice
Kalari again. Raghuti Gurukkal passed away in 2011 and Meenakshi Gurukkal took charge of the Kalari Sangham.
Disciples ranging from 6 to 60 year of age are practicing under her guidance. She is not collecting fee for teaching Kalari, only receives
Dakshina (an affordable offering from disciples ) from them.
Kalari and age
Age has nothing to do with Kalari Practice." I'm still very energetic and active, because I'm practicing Kalari regularly, It keeps both our
mind and body energetic," Meenakshi Gurukkal said.This 70-year old lady is going ahead to keep a traditional art form live.