Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Chaos theory will have us believe that small disturbances in a system will ripple through, magnifying themselves leading to one huge cataclysm. The bigger the system and the longer it takes for the smaller errors to accumulate. And after the big bang, the newer systems are generated with small errors of their own, which in time lead to further chaos. India was an idea crafted by politicians, visionaries. An impractical reality that somehow defied all laws of coherence and managed to stick as a coherent entity. Too many differences in the entities that constituted it. Most countries had a strong basis in language, religion, history or culture. Some were racially defined, some were remnants of large civilizations. India was all this and more. And none of this. Peoples of different colors and histories, strange languages and stranger antecedents. At time the only string holding the country together was its land mass and the sheer number of people.

Throughout the latter half of the nineteenth century Indians sought to gain common ground. Politics provided a great platform, the violence and dazzle luring all equally from Itanagar to Calicut. The onslaught of the middle class with similar values. The common feeling of battling poor infrastructure, violence and general chaos to reach the elusive higher plane. At the turn of the century it lay poised like a badly balanced airplane to take off into the future. And like a horrible aircraft , ill fated to reach the skies, it blew. And splintered into pieces. Like the body parts of the mythical Shakti, into several pieces, as it was since antiquity. India as a nation ceased to exist in 2035. Experts will point out several factors and reveal the imminence of that action. Some say it was to happen, some felt it to be an unnatural paradigm. Foreign hands, Gods, Religions, Colour and every possible prejudice were blamed in this fission. But reality lay splattered, a loose coalition of city-states and smaller principalities across the sub-continent.

And now each of these entities would be free of violence they thought. Bound by religion, culture or language exclusively. Some countries exclusively urban, some completely rural. Some spread out over large swathes of land, some confined to off shore islands and scanty mountaintops.

Circa 2009

Facebook and Orkut were merely tools. Sure they provided valuable connections now and then but that was about it. Six degrees of separation worked for once, in his favour. Combing the mists of the ancient past, searching through medieval rabble and trying to locate the future in the present chaos of modern India, his was a difficult task indeed. Especially the part of India he was supposed to work on.

Searching wasn’t easy. For one his search began around 1279 AD. And history wasn’t an easy pursuit. Like a temptress his destination moved across regions and countries. It changed languages and religions. And the messy proposition of caste. Which had oscillated no lesser than five times in 1500 years.

The task was fairly straightforward, to separate India into little nations. They were a large organization and had working teams, named in a cruel mockery of the Indian army. The Rajputanas would take care of Rajasthan, the Sikh regiment would create Khalistan. The Marathas would bring back their medieval glories and the Telengana dream of statehood went a step further to nationhood. Their team was nicknamed ‘Sangam’ signifying the lost Tamil age.

To bring back the glories of the Tamil nation, they needed a king. And not just anyone would do. So a meticulous search began. Looking through temple records, land deeds, properties and inheritances. Modern government databases, census data. Methodically sifted. Each demographic scanned and formulated. Large swathes of data residing as a muddle of names and places. It seemed hopeless at first but slowly a pattern began to emerge. And history, initially obfuscating, then slowly revealing patterns only to disappoint. Then letting out a little clue and piece by piece the jigsaw fell into place.

They had started with the Pandyans first, the last surviving Tamil kingdom. The lineage seemed straightforward enough till the fifteenth century where it ran into several errant progeny marrying in and out of religions. Invaders complicated the picture and the present day descendants would most likely be Indonesian. Or not. The Chera descendants were lost, over records and state boundaries. Eventually with time and meticulous research they had got to the inevitable.

Find the descendant of the Cholas. She survives.