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Lunch & Chanting at Saraswati Vidya Kendra

photos of kindergarten tudents eating lunch at Saraswati Vidya Kendra Kumta by Arun Shanbhag

I have previously written about the mid-day school lunch at the Shanbhag High School and the primary Saraswati Vidya Kendra in Kumta. When I visited Kumta earlier this year, I took a few video snippets of students lining up for lunch and the KG students chanting the blessing. At the Konkan schools, teachers too have […]

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Kini Hotel, Kumta

pics of chai and breakfast at Kini Hotel Kumta by Arun Shanbhag

This tiny tea shop in Kumta is my main eating and meeting place in Kumta. It’s in the main paent (market) and only a few steps from the Shanteri Kamakshi Devasthan and the Venkatraman Muth/Devasthan.

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Kumta Street Vegetables

photos of fresh vegetable vendors on Kumta Street by Arun Shanbhag

In the Kumta market, these women set up shop early in the morning before the crowds got there. Those vegetables look so delicious! It was March, so the variations of brinjals/eggplants were in season. You will also find konkani classics padwal, ghosalae, muLi (radish), tambdi bhaji (red leaves), vaaLi (green creeper leaves), muggae, karate, maskaa […]

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Girls making Papad 2

Picture of girls making papad in Kumta, India

A few years back while visiting Kumta I went back to the little shack where I had earlier seen young women making papad (writeup and pics). I was glad to see that this little cinderblock workshop was still active, and women came together to make papad and other eatables to sell in local stores. I […]

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Scholarships for the Needy: 2010 – 2011

That gift which is given to a worthy person, in the right circumstance, from whom we expect nothing in return, is held to be most pure. ~ Bhagavad Gita, 17:20 Here is the list of students awarded the 2010 Shanbhag Scholarships in Kumta, India. I thank the many donors who made valuable contributions, so needy […]

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Video: Approaching Kumta on the Konkan Railway

Move your mouse out of the video frame to lose the black border. Music: Mere Desh Ka Salaam, Shobha Gurtu. Those who have ridden the Konkan Railway can attest, the rural countryside with emerald green fields is mesmerizing. I think of an early retirement in a village, a small house and running a school. To […]

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Scholarships for the Needy: 2009 – 2010

That gift which is given, knowing it to be a duty, in a fit time and place, to a worthy person, from whom we expect nothing in return, is held to be most pure. ~ Bhagavad Gita, 17:20 Several years ago we started these scholarships to support needy girls at the Shanbhag School in Kumta. […]

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Academic Update from Shanbhag School 2009

Just received results from the recent Karnataka State Board Exams (Std X) for students at the Shanbhag School in Kumta, Karnataka. What a spectacular performance by the students! Congratulations! Our gratitude also to the teachers who do a fabulous job, every day! Summary of Results: 74 students appeared for the X Std, Karnataka State Board […]

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Scholarships for the Needy 2008-2009

Hope you all had a wonderful “Makar Sankranti.” Now the Sun rises earlier each day and sets later, bringing light and warmth to all aspects of our lives. This year, I celebrated Sankranti in Mumbai with close family and overate “til-gul” and “til ladoo.” Too lazy to ask why this focus on sesame, I simply […]

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Lunch at the Saraswati Vidya Kendra, Kumta

photos of Students Chanting before Lunch at the Saraswati Vidya Kendra Kumta by Arun Shanbhag

A few weeks ago I wrote about mid-day lunch at the Shanbhag School in Kumta. During our recent visit to Kumta in July, I walked over to the adjacent primary school – Saraswati Vidya Kendra.

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Lunch at the Shanbhag School

In 2007, the Shanbhag School in Kumta (and their parent, the Konkan Education Trust), started to provide lunch for all their students. In the midst of a long day, the students had previously rushed home during their lunch hour. There are no cafeterias or restaurants near the school. The school made a significant investment in […]

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Scholarships for the Needy

I have previously written about the Shanbhag School, an academic beacon in Kumta and surrounding villages. The Shanbhag High School, managed by the Konkan Education Trust does not receive any governmental aid. But it follows the state determined academic syllabus and guidelines. While we attract many students who can afford fees, our family wanted to […]

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Tambdo Phovu – Red Flattened Rice

Phovu (beaten or flattened rice) freshly mixed with few spices is a staple of Konkanis. Growing up, we’d eat tambdo phovu (tambdo – red) nearly every day for breakfast. If not for the main dish, at least as a side. I prefer it sprinkled with a little sev, or served on the side (see pic […]

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Fresh-ground Raagi Flour

Raagi Bhakri is a favorite in our home. It’s easy to prepare and very filling. During this past visit to Kumta I replenished our stock of Raagi flour. A few blocks from our place in Kumta is a little “girNi” (or mill) which grinds various types of flour. It is run by a distant relative […]

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Academic Update from the Shanbhag School 2007

When I first posted on the Shanbhag School, the upper floor (1st floor) was still under construction. During my visit in Nov, it was a thrill to see students enjoying lectures in the new classrooms. You can see pics of ongoing classes later in the post. But first, an important question: How are the students […]

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Kids on a School Bus

When I asked folks at the Shanbhag School the best way to travel to Kodkani (about 15 kms from Kumta) to see Shilpa’s parents, they recommended that I ride the School bus. On Saturdays, school ends at noon and the bus drops off students in Kodkani. Riding the bus would thus bring me in Kodkani […]

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Meeting Aayi of Aayis Recipes

Looking for new recipes, you have likely browsed Aayi’s Recipes the uber popular food blog hosted by Shilpa. This is M’s favorite “go-to” site anytime she needs inspiration for her cooking. During my travels to India, I look forward to visiting our ancestral town of Kumta – Jewel of the Konkan in coastal Karnataka. And […]

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Shanbhag School in Kumta

photos of CVSK High School Kumta by Arun Shanbhag

Our grandfather is from the village of Chitrigi in Kumta (coastal Karnataka). Since he moved to Mumbai in the 1930s, we all considered Mumbai our home with not much connection to Kumta. About a decade earlier, our family decided to support a High School building in Kumta in memory of our grandfather, but our family […]

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Cashew Nuts: To Your Health

Factories play an important role in India's rural economy. They provide jobs for local men and women, which translates into money to buy food, send kids to school, buy medicines if needed, repair and maintain a house and save some money. Villages and towns in India (as elsewhere in the world) don't need an handout, […]

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Kumta: School Kids

Outside my cousin-brother's house in Kumta, these kids were walking back from school. They seemed eager to pose. After shooting this pic, I offered them one of the Britannia cream biscuit packs I always carry in my bag. They grabbed and ran – jumping in joy! Other Kumta Related Posts: Kumta: Jewel of the Konkan […]

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Kumta: Field of Dreams

The road leading from my cousin's house in Chitragi to the Kumta (paent) market. It's a beautiful 10 minute walk. Here, bicycles serve as family vehicles. Notice how calmly, mom and infant are enjoying the ride on the rack. The open drains on the side of the roads, carry the heavy monsoon rain water run-off. […]