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A great-grandmother keeps an Indian martial art alive

Meenakshi Amma, right, and her son Sajeev Kumar are practitioners and teachers of Kalaripayattu, a traditional martial art that originated in Kerala. [Manjunath Kiran/AFP] Deftly parrying her son with a bamboo cane, Meenakshi Amma’s prowess at Kalari – thought to be India’s oldest martial art – belies her 78 years. The great-grandmother in Kerala, southern India, has been a driving force in the revival of Kalarippayattu – as the ancient practice is also known – and in encouraging girls to take it up. “I started Kalari when I was seven. I am still practising, learning and teaching,” said the […]

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