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Pioneering book on Eo,e1/4Y[pounds sterling]History of BuntsEo,e1/4,ao released.

MANGALORE (India): A book on the Eoe1/4Y[pounds sterling]History of BuntsEoe1/4ao, dealing with the origin and development of the Bunt community of the Karnataka west coast, was released here recently. Authored by mediaperson and researcher Prof. Krishnananda Hegde, the book traces the history of the valiant Bunts for the first time, covering a time span ranging from the medieval age to modern times. The book, published under the banner of Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Mangalore Kendra, contains a scientifically researched story of the Bunts based on data picked up from primary sources of the Colonial Period.

The author explains the circumstances that led the Bunts to become rich and powerful. They became so cash rich by the second part of the nineteenth century that many of them remodelled their ancient, large thatched houses with tiled roofings. They embellished their manorial houses with richly carved wooden pillars and ceilings. These traditional houses still dot the landscape of the Karnataka coast. They have become symbols of the rich cultural heritage of Karnataka.

The Bunts lived in bustling joint families. They followed the matrilineal system of property inheritance. They worshipped folk deities. Their rituals were not bound by the Vedic canon, yet they became trustees of Vedic temples in the Karnataka coast.

Prof. Krishnananda HegdeEoe1/4aos narrative takes the reader back to an era when the Bunts were struggling to come out of the medieval mindset and set foot on the threshold of modernity.

Bunts provided security in village life. They were the landed gentry who were known for their generosity and leadership qualities. They were the arbiters of social justice. They did not hesitate to punish those who trespassed the social code of conduct.

Bunts were also known for the social bonding they forged with other communities in the region. Of particular interest is the exemplary manner in which they treated the dalits. The dalits were looked after with love and affection like oneEoe1/4aos own family.

The author notes that the Bunts have more than compensated for their initial lack of interest in higher education, lamented by a 19th century British Collector of Mangalore, John Sturrock. A community that had specialised in agribusiness diversified. As a result, many highly successful professionals including doctors, engineers, lawyers, educationists and entrepreneurs the world over are from the community of Bunts of the Karnataka west coast.

The book has 352 pages including 24 pages of color photographs and is priced at Rs. 900.

Muscat Press and Publishing House SAOC 2008

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Publication:Times of Oman (Muscat, Oman)
Date:Sep 2, 2008
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