In the earlier Chapters, the information and data available are presented without any conclusions. In the Chapter ‘Interpretation of Data’, selected topics are taken up for interpretation on the basis of information available. These are personal views with limited data. There is a need to expand the scope of this Chapter.
It is difficult to interpret imperfect data. Best of my efforts with limited means, I could not get the required data. But, I feel something is better than nothing. Therefore, the available data is considered. As repeatedly stated, we do not have sufficient written record left by our ancestors. For details please see “Origin of Mogaveeras”. Unfortunately, even after getting educated, we do not have accurate data about our people. Today, we do not know the exact number of Mogaveera villages, other places where migrated Mogaveeras are residing, our occupations, our institutions, approximate number of people etc.
Creation of basic data:
The data base is to be created by obtaining basic data in respect of the places where Mogaveeras are residing at present. First step is to have a complete list of the places where Mogaveeras reside. Here we have basic data on 353 Mogaveera villages of coastal Karnataka. Second step is to collect the data of Mogaveeras residing at other places in the State of Karnataka. The third step is to collect the data of Mogaveeras residing in the State of Maharashtra, particularly at MMRDA region (around Greater Mumbai). The MMRDA is divided into six major Municipal areas and nine minor municipal areas. The details are available in the Chapter “Habitats” under heading ‘MMRDA’. The fourth step is to collect the details of Mogaveeras residing outside the States of Karnataka and Maharashtra. The fifth step is to collect the data of Mogaveeras residing abroad, i.e. in foreign countries. All these data should be co-related and further enumeration of Mogaveeras should be attempted. Once this basic data is available further census can be conducted.
Two Division of Interpretation
The interpretations of data can be attempted in two parts, one enlisting the glorious Mogaveera heritage and achievements which every Mogaveera is proud of and the second part enlisting the needs for reforms in the Mogaveera community institutions and practices. At first, the Mogaveera heritage and achievements are dealt with. Later the issues relating to reforms in Mogaveera community institutions and practices are dealt with.
Proud Mogaveera Practices
During the study of the Mogaveera Community, it has come to my notice that there are several institutions and practices of our community which are unique and makes us proud. Only few are explained hereafter.
There are 353 Mogaveera villages. A few Mogaveera Grama Sabhas from Uppala Grama Sabha , (at the northern end of State of Kerala) which are part of Mangalore Hobali (Mangalore Taluka) and Barkur Hobali (Udupi Taluka), Mogaveera villages are known as ‘Mogaveera Grama Sabhas’ and Mogaveera villages in Bagwadi Hobali (Kundapur Taluka) are known as ‘Mogaveera Kudiges’ . Mogaveera Grama Sabhas and Mogaveera Kudiges are different from the revenue villages. Mogaveeras of Mangalore and Barkur Hobalies formed their ‘ Grama Sabhas’ giving representation to all male adult members. A few Mogaveera ‘Grama Sabhas’ joined together formed ‘Samyukta Patna’. The ‘Samyukta Patnas’, in turn joined together to form a ‘ Hobali Sabha’. Two Hobalies of Mangalore and Barkur have formed D.K.Mogaveera Mahajana Sangha in 1926. Bagwadi Hobali Mogaveera Kudiges had also formed Mogaveera Mahajana Seva Sangha, Bagwadi in 1927. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. In other words, Mogaveeras had multi-layered traditional organizations which is again unique and such multi-layered traditional 0rganizations are not available in other communities.
Living adjacent to Sea
Mogaveeras have the privilege of living in coastal villages of northern part of Kasargod Taluka of State of Kerala, Mangalore, Udupi and Kundapur Talukas of Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts of State of Karnataka. Mogaveera Hobalies are roughly corresponding to these talukas. In other words, Mangalore Taluka is Mangalore Hobali , Udupi Taluka is Barkur Hobali and Kundapur Taluka is Bagwadi Hobali. For more details please see ‘Mogaveera Habitats’. Around eighty percent of Mogaveera villages occupy one hundred and twenty kilo meters sea front in a consecutive row which is itself a rare privilege which no other community can claim.
Dispute Redressal Mechanism
Every tribal community generally had their own dispute redressal mechanisms. However, the dispute redressal mechanisms developed by Mogaveera community were a guideline for formatting the legal system. The system of dispute redressal developed by Mogaveeras starts from hearing/judgments at ‘Grama Sabha’ level. The aggrieved party can appeal to ‘Samyukta Sabha’ . Any party still aggrieved can go to a further appeal to ‘Hobali Sabha’ . If the party to dispute is still not satisfied, they can make a ‘Mercy Petition’ to Mogaveera Kulaguru and Kulaguru would hear the appeal at Bennekuduru Temple and his decision used to be final. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Organizations”. This system existed much before the current multi-layer legal system came into operation. This traditional grievance redressal mechanism is the gift of Mogaveera community.
Mogaveera women have their own ‘Mahila/Bhagini/Mathru Samajas’ at village level and an apex body at Hobali level where membership is open for all ‘Mahila Samajas’ . The representatives of these apex bodies of ‘Mahila Samajas’ are allowed as executive members of the apex bodies of Mogaveera traditional apex bodies, such as, D. K. Mogaveera Mahajana Sangha and Mogaveera Mahajana Seva Sangha. For more’ details, please see ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. These kinds of women’s institutions are not available in other communities.
Mogaveeras were the first to organize the co-operative movements in India by introducing co-ownership in ‘Patte-bale’, ‘Y-Bale’, ‘Rampani’ and ‘Kairampani’ . All these fishing occupations were models of co-operative society where Mogaveeras were co- owners and also contributed their labour to generate income which used to be distributed among them. This system was in operation in India before the British government enacted co-operative laws. In ‘Y-Bale’, this concept of co-operative movement was taken to the next level by forming confederations of co-operative societies. In other words, ‘Y-Bale Jody’ (two boats constitute one unit) was a co-operative society and several ‘Y-Bale Jodies’ formed a confederation to fish together and share the income first among the ‘Jodies’ and later co-owners of a ‘Jody’ apportioned the income among themselves. For more details, please see ‘Occupations of Mogaveeras’. Mogaveeras can claim to be the fore-runners of Co-operative movement in India.
Collecting Tax at Source (TDS)
Mogaveeras had a system of allotting a share in their collective income and directly paying it to their respective ‘Grama Sabhas’ . This system was in operation in their occupations such as, ‘ Bhisana’, Patte-bale’, Y-Bale, ‘Rampani’ and ‘Kairampani’ . Here, a share equivalent to a co-owner is deducted and paid directly to ‘Grama Sabhas’. This is popularly known as ‘Babbarya Palu’, meaning that the share is of the guardian deity of fishing. These innovative collections of contribution (tax) at source were used by many ‘Grama Sabhas’ to build school, to pay scholarship, to build and maintain Bhajana Mandiras, Daivasthans, ‘Vyayama Shale’ (Gyms)’ etc. for the benefit of the members. It is not out of place to mention here that this indigenous tax collection at source was in operation by Mogaveera community much before Income-tax Act, 1961 introduced ‘Tax Deduction at Source – TDS’. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. All Mogaveeras should be proud of their ancestors for such a noble practice of collection of money for the benefit of their community.
First Mutual Self-help and Insurance
Mogaveeras have been operating ‘Marana (death) Fund’ a combination of mutual help scheme with insurance benefit. This system is still in existence with a few ‘Grama Sabhas’ . There is clear evidence to the fact that this system has also been operated by migrant Mogaveeras in the city of Mumbai in 1935. For more details, please see ‘Appendix IV’ of Chapter ‘Appendices’. This system was also in existence much before Insurance Companies and Mutual Benefit Schemes started their operation in our country.
All Mogaveeras accept ‘Shree Kulamahastri Amma’ at Bennekuduru Temple as their ‘KuIadevi’ . In this Mogaveera Temple, an elderly lady known as ‘Ajjamma’ and Mogaveera Kulagurus with the help of Mogaveera priests performed all poojas up to 1966. Even now, Mogaveera priests only perform daily poojas. For more details, please see the Chapter “Mogaveera Religious Practices”. This kind of unique religious temple cannot be found anywhere in Tulu Nadu.
Mogaveera Kulaguru Parampara
Up to 1966, among the Tuluva communities, Mogaveeras alone had their ‘Kulaguru’ . Mogaveera Kulagurus who not only performed poojas at Bennekuduru Temple but also were in charge of the administration of the temple. Mogaveera Kulagurus were also last court of appeal in dispute redressal system of Mogaveera community. For more details, please see the Chapter “Mogaveera Religious Practices”. The Mogaveera Kulaguru Parampara is unique and cannot be found in any other Tuluva communities.
Mogaveera Gurikara Paddathi
Mogaveeras also had a hereditary system of ‘Gurikaras’ who looked after and supervised all aspects of Mogaveera community at the levels of Grama Sabhas, Samyukta Patnas and Hobalies. At Hobali level ‘Gurikaras’ were known as “Mukteshwaras”. For more details please see ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. This Mogaveera institution was in the past a unique institution. Now, this system is losing its importance due to elected bodies of traditional Mogaveera Community organizations are taken up the administrative and supervisory rolls of ‘Gurikaras’ .
In the Mogaveera Community, there are fifteen ‘Balis/Baris (Surnames)’. Each Mogaveera is able to identify himself with one of the ‘Bali/Bari (Surname) and corresponding ‘Moolasthana’ . For more details, please see “Mogaveera Religious Practices’. Mogaveera community is the only community where each Mogaveera can identify his origin to a particular Moolasthana. This is a specialty of Mogaveera community.
Mogaveera Freedom Fighters
History records that Rani Abbakka of Ullal fought naval battles with Portuguese in 1555, 1567 and 1581 and won. These were the initial battles for preventing foreign invasion. Mogaveera Naval Commanders of Ullal, Chennappa Gurikara and Kunja Marakala were the real heroes who were responsible for the victory. They were instrumental in organizing Mogaveeras from Barkur to Ullal and provide material support in the form of boats etc. Chennappa Gurikara was not only a Naval Commander but also a Minister in the court of Rani Abbakka . Kunja Marakala was in charge of protecting Rani Abbakka during the battle of 1581 with Portuguese. Enraged Portuguese after their final defeat stealthily kidnapped Kunja Marakala and killed him and defamed his body. Mogaveeras had not only contributed men, materials and laid down their lives in these battles for freedom fought in the sea but also one of the Mogaveeras; Kunja Marakala of Ullal was the first martyr. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Freedom Fighters’ in the Chapter “Prominent Mogaveeras’. All Mogaveeras should be proud of these valiant freedom fighters.
Mogaveeras are the first migrants of Mumbai
Mogaveeras may be the first Tuluva community came to Mumbai. They brought with them the organizing zeal to Mumbai and formed branches of ‘Grama Sabhas’ , probably in the beginning of 1800. Later in 1884 ‘Barkur Hobali Sabha’ was established with two ‘Mukteshwaras’ (trustees) and a ‘Shanubhag’ (accountant) who managed this organization. In 1929, this organization adopted the system of having an elected Managing Committee giving representation to all participating Mogaveera ‘Grama Sabhas’. It may look strange but true that these branches of Mogaveera organizations at Mumbai enjoyed the same powers that of the traditional Mogaveera organizations of native place. Available records show, in the year 1894 Mumbai Mogaveeras of around fifty villages have collected 1141 names of Mogaveeras residing at Mumbai hailing from Ullal to Kundapur as the supporters for a petition made to Finance Department of Government of Madras against the levy of Salt tax on ‘Mannupu’. ‘Mannupu’ is a natural formation of salt in the adjacent low lying areas of rivers joining the sea. Here, names of the villages and first name of Mogaveera member are recorded. It appears that Salt-tax was not imposed. Later, the levy Salt-tax was once again revived around 1930 which was resisted and became a famous ‘ Salt Sathyagraha’ , an Independence Movement. The protest against the levy of salt-tax of 1890 remained unnoticed. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Institutions at the State of Maharashtra’ in the Chapter ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. But what was done in 1894 by Mumbai Mogaveeras show their unity and commitment towards the welfare of their people at native place. Should we not proud of this initiative of our ancestors?
Mogaveeras built first Institutions at Mumbai
A few more instances are mentioned hereafter which Mogaveeras can be proud of. A saintly Mogaveera, late Shri Rama Panji of Kannangar (Hejmadi) had started “Shree Madhbharatha Mandali’ in 1878. Later in 1902, Mogaveera Vyavasthapaka Mandali (MVMandali), in 1934 Mogaveera Yuvaka Sangha (Yuvaka Sangha) and in 1941 Mogaveera Mahajana Seva Sangha (Bagwadi Hobali – 1941) were established. The M. V. Mandali is credited with starting first girl’s school and other educational institutions, first Kannada Magazine ‘Mogaveera’ , first co-operative bank ‘Mogaveera Co-operative Bank Ltd.’, first co-operative housing society ‘Shree Mahalakshmi Co-operative Housing Society Ltd.’, etc. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Institutions at the State of Maharashtra’ in the Chapter ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. Many more can be enumerated with pride.
Review of Existing Mogaveera Institutions and Practices
After dealing with certain issues which Mogaveeras can be proud of, it is time to deal with certain reforms in the Mogaveera community institutions and existing practices where improvements needs to be made.
Protection of Mogaveera Legacy
Migration due to lack of fishing opportunities:
Roughly around five hundred years back Mogaveera community started migrating to our present villages and made them as their homes. During the period 1900 AD to 2000 AD our presence in our coastal villages at its peak when Rampani was in full swing. After the decline in traditional fishing, particularly after Rampani ceased to exist, Mogaveeras migration out of their coastal villages started. Local people migrated to fish landing centres and fishing harbours as it suits their profession of fishing. A few started travelling between their habitats to fishing centres. The fishing became capital incentive and became prohibitive for an average fisherman. Native people also migrated to other places and do not want to come back to their original villages.
Locked Houses & deserted orchards:
The people who are educated and well off in profession and business settled down in other places; do not want to come back or renew their contact due to disillusionment and lack of interest. Now, as the Mogaveera community is slowly migrating out and our village land is being sold and many houses remain closed. If the present trend continues, Mogaveeras will be remembered as people once lived in coastal villages and now in the process of vacating it for others to occupy the same.
Mogaveera Home & land:
At present, Mogaveera villages generally occupy around 120 kilo meters of sea front, covering an area of half kilo meter deep towards landward side. In some places, the villages are located deep inside. The availability of ample sea front, water resources of rivers, harbours, feeder roads, green plantation of coconut trees, makes the place incomparable. An identifiable area around 120 kilo meters spread abutting sea front of Mogaveera villages gives a unique identity which no other community can claim. This aspect is special and is the Mogaveera heritage. Please refer to “Picture Gallery” for visuals of our rich heritage.
Action Plan for Protection of Mogaveera Heritage:
Mogaveera village land should not be allowed to be sold to outsiders. For this purpose, Grama Sabhas , Moolasthanas and groups of people can form Land Banks and Co-operative Housing societies. Coastal villages of Mogaveeras are ideal place for opening small hospitality facilities. For more details, please see Chapters ‘Mogaveera Habitats’ and ‘Occupations of Mogaveeras’. The above measures will not only protect Mogaveera heritage but also turn out to be very good investment/business proposition with a bonus of retaining connection with our roots.
Representation to all Mogaveeras
Mogaveeras have migrated from their traditional villages into places where fishing facilities are available. A large number of people who are still residing at coastal villages have changed their occupation, particularly, other than fishing. It is also fact that more or less half the number of Mogaveeras are living outside their native villages. Many of these migrated Mogaveeras live in cities of States of Karnataka and Maharashtra. At present, at least 50% of our people are residing outside our traditional coastal villages
Decline in Mogaveera population in native villages:
The number of people in the occupation of fishing cannot be more than 25% of the total population. In other words, approximately 75% of Mogaveeras are not in the occupation of fishing. This 75% people are practically out of traditional occupation of fishing. The Mogaveeras residing outside coastal villages at Mumbai have started branches of Grama Sabhas. Out of 353 Mogaveera villages, there are about 32 have branch office at Mumbai. Even the membership of these branch Grama Sabhas has limited scope. Therefore, all other Mogaveeras residing at Mumbai have to become members of their respective Grama Sabhas for membership and participation. This seldom happens and majority of these Mogaveeras are left out of the decision making process. Similar is the case of Mogaveeras residing in other places. In effect, approximately 75% of male members of Mogaveeras are not effectively participating in the affairs of their traditional organizations. The Mogaveeras residing outside their native places needs to be brought into as members of Mogaveera Traditional organizations.
Representation to Women:
We must understand that 50% of Mogaveera population is made up of women. Now a day, the status of women is considered to be equal to men. Women are now well educated and have become earning members of the family. They occupy important positions in all fields of life. Present laws recognize that women have equal right in the inherited and self acquired parent’s property with equal responsibility to maintain them. But, Mogaveera traditional organizations, such as, Grama Sabhas, Samyukta Sabhas, Hobali Sabhas and Sarva Hobali Sabha have not granted them primary membership as membership of these organizations is exclusively for men only. In brief, 100% women (approximately 50% of Mogaveeras) have no representation in Mogaveera traditional organizations.
All inclusive Representation:
As already stated above, approximately 50% of the male of the total Mogaveera population resides outside Mogaveera native villages are not participating in the Mogaveera traditional organizations. Similarly, Mogaveera women who are 50% of the total population of Mogaveeras are not represented in the Mogaveera Traditional organizations. It is not an exaggeration if it is said that these Mogaveeras (male & female) are better educated and cream of the Mogaveera community. In other words, 75% of the total Mogaveera population (50% Mogaveera women and 25% Mogaveera male members of total Mogaveeras population) is not represented in the Mogaveera traditional organizations. To have truly representative Mogaveera traditional organizations to work for the betterment of the Mogaveera community, it is necessary to find a way to get these Mogaveeras (including Mogaveera women) properly represented in Mogaveera traditional organizations. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. This will ensures involvement all Mogaveeras and bring in contributions for benefit of the Mogaveera community.
A Single Apex Body for all Mogaveeras
Mogaveera Apex Bodies have different format:
Mangalore and Barkur Hobalies (corresponding to Mangalore and Udupi Talukas) have formed their own Apex body D. K. Mogaveera Mahajana Sangha (DKMMS), registered at Mangalore (State of Karnataka). The membership of this Apex body is restricted only to Samyukta Sabhas (indirect membership to Grama Sabhas) and individual membership in any of these traditional organizations is not permitted. DKMMS has a branch office at Mumbai in which limited numbers of branches of Grama Sabhas are members. Bagwadi Hobali (corresponding Kundapur Taluka) has its own Apex body known as Mogaveera Mahajana Seva Sangha (Bagwadi Hobali 1941) (MMSS) and registered at Mumbai (State of Maharashtra). In this organization, individual membership is permitted and Mogaveera Kudiges ( Grama Sabhas) are not allowed membership. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. They have a branch office at Kundapur which is administered by a committee nominated by the parent body.
Need to find Common Membership Pattern:
All the above issues need to be taken into consideration and proper representation for all the Mogaveera community need to be provided so that all Mogaveeras would become party to the decision making process of the Mogaveera community. A single apex body of the Mogaveera community or a confederation of all the Mogaveera traditional organizations and other Mogaveera organizations can be planned. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Organizations’. Further integration of Mogaveeras and other brotherhood communities can be attempted later.
Need for integrating 39 Mogaveera Brotherhood Communities
Now, there is an attempt to consolidate all the 39 Mogaveera Brotherhood communities under one Apex body. The reason is that State of Karnataka and Government of India are in the process of including 39 Mogaveera Brotherhood Communities, the present Other Backward Communities (OBCs.) in the list of Scheduled Caste (S.Ts.). Unfortunately, we do not have elementary data about these communities, such as, where they live and what are their backgrounds. For more details, please see Chapter ‘Mogaveera Community’. Therefore, it is necessary to address all these aspects before forming a viable apex body of all the 39 Mogaveera Brotherhood Communities.
Need for Integration of all Fishermen Communities
The Mogaveera community apex bodies and all the apex bodies of the other 39 Mogaveera Brotherhood communities can initiate steps to consolidate and form a confederation of apex bodies representing all the fishermen communities at least in the State of Karnataka. This will give lot of advantage to all the fishing communities which have a common traditional occupation.
Other Backward Classes (OBCs)
It is a well known fact that status of OBCs for Mogaveera community, particularly those who are residing at native villages, is a necessity. Mandal Commission had recommended many benefits for OBCs and only few have been implemented. The fact that Mogaveera community has been excluded from the creamy layer helps all Mogaveeras to get whatever benefit accrue under OBCs. Obtaining of OBC certificate is necessary. For more details, please see the Chapter ‘Mogaveera Community’. In principle, a member of OBC irrespective of his place of residence is entitled to all the benefits that accrue from the Central Government and its subsidiary organization. However, in practice this has not been implemented.
The problem Areas:
In the first place, all Mogaveeras are not aware of the importance of OBC certificate and not obtained the same.
The OBC certificates are not issued in the approved format which includes the number/date of the Government Notification and serial number of the community listed in the notification. The OBC certificate issued without all the details and approved format may create problem.
It is also seen that OBC certificates issued do not indicate the fact that the Mogaveera community is excluded from creamy layer.
The OBC certificates for migrated Mogaveeras are issued only if they are born and educated at the native place.
Need for OBC Certificate:
The problems cited above can be sorted out by Grama Sabhas , DKMMS and MMSS taking steps to educate Mogaveera community and representing the case before Tahasildars (Taluka level), Deputy Commissioners (District level), and authorities of State Governments.
Aliya Santhana Kattu
Change in law and practice:
Briefly stated, after the abolition of Aliya Santhana Kattu in 1956, the property rights on ancestral properties operate as if under the Patriarchal system (Hindu Law) i. e. inheritance is now from parents to their children. The second important aspect is that the adoption of father’s surname instead of mother’s which is consistent with current situation, adds to confusion. The third factor emerging is that practically there is no joint family system and majority of unitary family adopt patriarchal system. Therefore, for all practical purposes, Aliya Santhana Kattu is not followed.
Because of change in law, the ownership of the land, house, Daivasthans ( Bhootasthanas) , Moolasthanas etc. would change in the years to come as these places would be owned by the children as per Hindu Laws of inheritance. Second issue is that because of change in method of adoption of surname i.e. of father’s, while deciding marriage, as per Mogaveera custom, the real surname (mother’s surname) of the bride and bridegroom is to be ascertained, there would be confusion. The last but not the least, there may be a situation where a family of six, consisting of father, mother, two sons and their wives, may have to go for worship of Mane Daiva and Moolasthana to more or less three to four places. To put it differently, few years later, it might be difficult to determine the real surname (of mother’s) and to which Mane Daiva or Moolasthana one really belongs to. Aliya Santhana Kattu was an unwritten law which governed the property, inheritance and religious practices of coastal Karnataka. Now, Hindu law is in place and people of the State of Karnataka are governed by Hindu law applicable for all the citizens. Legally speaking, the religious practices now being followed cannot be legally enforced. It is true, each community can regulate its affairs within the confines of legal system and this system needs to be reconsidered.
Need for Adoption of Patriarchal System:
Aliya Santhana Kattu is followed in worship of Mane Daiva (House Deity), Moolasthana and fixing of marriage. Practically all the death related rituals are now being performed in the pattern of patriarchal system except offering food to ancestors ( Mittari/Misssri ). These practices need to be discussed and corrected. Now practically all Mogaveera families in principle adopted patriarchal system. Therefore, in the matter of worship of Mane Daiva , Moolasthana , arranging of marriage etc. also patriarchal systems need be adopted. For more details, please see the Chapter ‘Mogaveera Customs’. This needs to be discussed and decided for the benefit of whole community.
Animal Sacrifice and Daiva Darshan
We have travelled from Dravidian ways of worship to Vedic ways of worship and retained both with conflicting practices. Both the ways of worship are now being practiced at our Bennekuduru Temple. To elaborate a little, we have Vedic Gods/Goddesses and Dravidian form of worship of Bhoothas/Daivas in Bennekuduru Temple. Vedic ways of Poojas are offered to Gods/Goddess and Dravidian ways of worship like of Raktahaara , Darshan and Kola is performed to Bhoothas/Daivas .
Many ways of worship of Bhoothas involve Raktahaara (animal sacrifice). Daiva Darshan and Kola , the Daiva (divine spirit) is believed to possess the Pathri (human being) and delivers solutions to the prayers/problems of the devotees.
It is a well-known truth that chicken, sheep, goat etc., are reared for consumption as food and in this process the same are slaughtered. But, still the question remains to be answered is as to why these living creatures should be killed in our religious places before our Gods? This needs to be deliberated.
Daiva Darshan / Kola
Similarly, assuming for the sake of argument, that the Bhoothas/Daivas are present on the human being while Darshan is being performed, believing that such divine presence for hours together and can deliberate on the domestic dispute is stretching the belief a bit too far. The modern day Kola Seva is expensive. It may cost anything between Rs.25000/- to Rs.100000/-. The additional expenses incurred by devotees travelling from far off places like Mumbai should also be considered. The Kola Seva had an entertainment value in the past which cannot be accepted now. The money spent by the devotees is the income of others and the time and money spent has little religious value needs to be considered.
Need for reconsideration
In fact, animal sacrifice in religious places is an offence and is banned by law. Some of the Jain families (some were small Rulers-Kings), Brahman families etc. in South Kenara who used to worship Daivas ( Bhoothas) have stopped offering Raktahaara substituting the same by cutting of white pumpkin with Kumkum applied on it which looks like blood. These communities have also stopped Daiva Darshan , Kola etc. Attempts were made by workers of Arya Samaja and Late Sadiya Sawookar of Udyawara Hadinalku Patna to ban these practices but these practices bounced back. Apart from law, it is time for Mogaveera community to take a call on this issue and stop this practice in our places of worship. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Religious Practices’. Therefore, the offering of Raktahaara and Daiva Darshan need to be reconsidered.
Review of Kulaguru Parampara
This tradition discontinued as the last Kulaguru failed to appoint a successor. There is move to revive the tradition of Kulaguru and many are opposing the same. One good thing about Kulaguru Parampara is that it ensured the Bennekuduru temple priest is a Mogaveera. Every Mogaveera is proud of this tradition. It is also a fact that even after the demise of the last Kulaguru , the priest hood of the temple remained with the Mogaveeras. By all means this precedent needs to be maintained.
Arguments for appointing Kulaguru: Some people argue that in the Asthamangala before the renovation of the Bennekuduru temple complex, it was revealed that an appointment of Kulaguru is beneficial to the Mogaveera community. Many feel that a Kulaguru as the head priest of the temple and leader of the community will give proper guidance to the community. Therefore, Kulaguru should be appointed.
Arguments against appointing Kulaguru:
Some people argue that even after the Bennekuduru temple was built, for a considerable time, Kulaguru was not in place. The limited period of Kulaguru Parampara was not inspiring and no record of number of Kulagurus and their teaching or guidelines issued by them are available. In the Asthamangala referred to above; it has come to light that Kulagurus have committed grave errors in maintaining the Bennekuduru temple. Now, procedure for appointing Kulaguru on the basis of hereditary succession has failed. The current trend in established Mathas is not encouraging. For more details, please see ‘ Mogaveera Kulagurus’ in Chapter ‘Mogaveera Religious Practices’. Therefore, appointing once again Kulaguru is not advisable.
Alternative for Kulaguru:
(1) It is essential to have Mogaveera priests in Bennekuduru Temple. Therefore, it is essential to get at least three priests trained in priesthood. Such priest training centres are now available. A reasonable salary and accommodation should be provided to the incumbents. A practice of inviting such priests for Mogaveera households for performing all types of poojas and religious ceremonies would ensure them decent income. Mogaveera community should ensure that these priests are respected. (2) Mogaveeras are the most democratically regulated community. Therefore, using our experience, we can work out Guru Parampara like of Sikh community. It may be pointed out that after having ten Gurus , Sikh community discarded this tradition of Guru Parampara and now have an elected body to manage their religious affairs and Gurudwara (Temple). For the purpose of administration of our religious places, it is better to have a committee modeled on the lines of ‘ Gurudwara Prabhandaka Committee’ of Sikh community. Such a system is democratic and might attract young and educated Mogaveeras who are living in India as well as abroad. (3) In the democratic society in which we live today, an informed discussion/debate on this issue should take place and a decision acceptable to all Mogaveera Community needs to be taken.
Expenditure on Religious vis a vis Educational Activities
Expenditure on religious places:
We can also easily make calculations of capital expenditures incurred by six Mogaveeras in respect of Mogaveera temples, twenty five Mogaveera Moolasthanas , more than sixty Bhajana Mandiras , more than thirty Grama Sabha Daivasthanas . The capital expenditure on building and renovation of these religious places, donations given to other local temples and religious places by Mogaveeras can be estimated. All these capital expenses factored into current price will give a comparable figure. Similar exercise can also be made to find out yearly revenue expenditure incurred by Mogaveera community in all these religious places in a year. For more details, please see Chapter ‘Mogaveera Religious Practices’ and ‘Appendix III’ of Chapter ‘Appendices’.
Expenditure on Education:
There is considerable investments in Educational Institutions were incurred by Mogaveera community up to 1980. Our community was the first to get the benefit of education in the form of Fisheries schools at native place and night schools in Mumbai. In the beginning, say up to 1980 our investment in education by Mogaveera traditional organizations were certainly commendable when illiterate and newly educated people devoted more time and money for this purpose. An exercise of the expenditure incurred for building schools and awarding scholarship etc. to Mogaveera students and factored into current price can also be made. Similar exercise can also be made to find out yearly revenue expenditure incurred by Mogaveera community in a year for educational institutions. For more details, please see ‘Mogaveera Educational & Other Institutions’ in Chapter ‘Mogaveera Organizations’ and ‘Appendix IV’ of the Chapter ‘Appendices’.
More Expenditure on religious purposes:
The expenditure incurred on religious institutions, such as, Mogaveera temples, Moolasthanas, Daivasthanas , and Bhajana Mandiras are more than the expenditure incurred in building schools and granting scholarships to students etc. Even though considerable data is collected, it is difficult to have a fair data to compute the expenditure incurred on religious institutions and educational institutions. However, rough estimates show that the expenditure on religious purposes is more than expenditure on educational purposes. In spite of this, If there is any improvement in the educational front for Mogaveeras, it is because of the individual efforts of parents and family. Mogaveera traditional and charitable institutions have failed miserably so far as supporting educational institutions and helping the poor Mogaveera students.
Need for More Investment on Education:
Anybody who has gone out for collecting donation for charitable purpose would definitely say that it is easier to collect donation for religious purposes than educational purposes. Everybody knows the reason. Basic one is that the people believe that by donating to a religious place i.e. God brings in rewards for the donor in many folds and donation towards educational institutions may earn some merit. Education is the basis of all good things in life. If we can give good education to our children, it is best thing one can do. All individuals are not endowed with means to educate their children and the society should come in such circumstances. Change in priority is needed.
Need for hostels for students & newly employed
Mogaveera Community need to address the present day requirements of our students and newly employed youth. Apart from providing scholarships and financial assistance to Mogaveera students, it is necessary to open hostels for students who are pursuing studies at cities. A similar hostel facility to the newly employed Mogaveera youth in selected cities is also a necessity. For the sake of convenience, student and youth hostels can be combined so that it might become cost effective. Mogaveera community is the only community which does not have similar facilities. It will be great help to our youngsters if we could establish hostels in the cities of Udupi, Mangalore, Bangalore etc. I am sure those of us who stayed in the Grama Sabha rooms in Mumbai would appreciate this move and support the idea.