Indian’s man search ends in Malaysia.
Being apart from parents is a different level of pain and it may even traumatise the child.
A story of a man who is searching for his father’s final resting place has finally come to an end. The call for Prabhurao Anandan’s search for his father’s grave has been answered.
Mr Thirumaran (who goes by only one name) said his father K Ramasundaram was a schoolteacher in Malaysia and he died of pneumonia in 1967. His father passed away merely six months after he was born. After the heartbreaking tragedy, Mr Thirumaran and his mother returned to the Southern Indian, State of Tamil Nadu in the same year.
He was unable to elaborate further about the memories he has of his father because he can’t even recall what he looked like. The Tamil Nadu-based journalist even gets more devasted after his mother passed away in 1987 when he was just 22 years old.
He kept some musty old letters that his father had written which has been passed down for years by his mother to him. According to his mother, his father was a “great humanitarian” and a “good singer,”.
Before her death 35 years ago, the mother shared an important detail about the site of her husband’s cemetery in Malaysia which is in the town of Kerling, where he had resided and passed away.
The 55-year-old activist, Mr Thirumaran who runs a school for kids rescued from forced labour in Tamil Nadu’s Tirunelveli district, made the decision to visit his father’s cemetery in November in an effort to “rekindle his connection” with him.
“I would often think that I must visit my father, but I hadn’t given it a serious thought. Until now,” he says.
Thanks to Google Search
Mr Thirumaran began his search by attempting to find his father’s school, but other than its name, he knew nothing about the institute. Ramasundaram taught the English subject at Thotta Thesiya Vakai Tamil Palli, a small school which was run by the Tamil community in Kerling.
With the help of Mr Thirumaran’s student, he began the search through Google. “I don’t know how to operate computers. So my students looked it up and showed me a picture of the school. I was stunned,” he expressed.
Besides, he also found that the school had been moved to another location, so he emailed its principal for help. Through the school administration, he got the contacts of his father’s former students, many of whom still live in Malaysia, and he reached out to them for help.
Over the next few days, several of them responded to his queries and offered to go look for the burial place. Mr Thirumaran said he was startled to see how fondly the students praise his father. (The students are now in their 80’s)
“One of them told me how my father bought him a bicycle to go to school and college. Another said that when he trailed in his studies, my father helped him perform well,” he said.
“When I heard all this, I realised what I had lost in my own life.”
The Wait is Over!
The student informed Mr Thirumaran after they located his father’s grave in Malaysia. With that happy news, on 8th November, the overwhelmed Mr Thirumaran flew to Malaysia to see his father’s resting place.
On a muggy morning, he stepped into the old cemetery in Kerling, hidden in a thicket of trees, and walked around the numerous headstones until he reached one near the bushes. It was his father’s.
“The grave was a little worn out and overgrown with wild grass, but the gravestone had a photo of him, as well as his name and birth and death dates,” he said, adding that until then, he had not seen a photo of his father and had no idea what he looked like.
When Mr Thirumaran’s mother had returned to India, she had brought back with her a handful of earth from her husband’s grave, which he said, he had sprinkled on his mother’s grave.
“This time, I took a handful of earth from my mother’s resting place and put it on my father’s grave,” the emotional Mr Thirumaran continues.
“It was as if through me they were sharing their love, even after death,” he added.
Over the next few days, Mr Thirumaran, with help from his father’s old students, cleaned the grave, lit candles and prayed several times before returning to India on 16 November. He remarked the trip gave him “more than he had imagined” in the form of priceless memories and souvenirs, including old pictures of his father.
“His students told me that I look like him. For a boy who grew up without his father, this was life coming full circle,” he said.
It’s just a delight that he was able to meet again and discover more amazing things about his great-late father.