Kolu dolls tell stories of school children

  • | Tuesday | 27th October, 2020

A virtual walk through the kolu, set up at the residence of S Mohanraj in Pappanaickenpalayam, narrates stories such as those about the woodcutter and the axe and the monkey and the crocodile.

Colorful papier Mache dolls and clay figurines of animals and trees neatly arranged on wooden shelves, bring alive the Panchantantra tale about the foolish lion and the clever rabbit. A virtual walk through the kolu, set up at the residence of S Mohanraj in Pappanaickenpalayam, narrates stories such as those about the woodcutter and the axe and the monkey and the crocodile.

“This year, I set up a kolu based on as many as 30 fables for children to ensure a joyful learning experience for them as they have been away from school because of COVID-19. They are always eager to learn more,” says Mohanraj

Every year, during Navaratri, he dresses up his collection of over 4,000 dolls and displays them on over 57 wooden steps for the public. And there are new additions every time as he sources a variety of dolls from places like Cuddalore, Panruti, Madurai and Kumbakonam. Mohanraj wants to reach out to children and give them a peek into our glorious past, culture and traditions.

“Last year, 5,000 students from various schools accompanied by their teachers visited the kolu. This time, we have restricted the numbers to ensure social distancing. Children now turn up with their parents.”

A collection of cars, aeroplanes and rockets vie for space along with displays of horse-drawn carriages, jatkas and bullock carts. A cricket field with 13 men fielding and umpires, batsmen and bowlers occupy pride of place.


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