Kerala family's photo of members smiling at a funeral goes viral
A family photo clicked during a funeral of one of their members is going viral for a reason that has the internet debating. The photo involves a family of 40, based in Kerala, gathered around a casket of the family’s matriarch, Mariyamma Varghese Panavelil. Varghese passed away at the age of 95 and her family members decided to bid her adieu in a merry manner.
“Our mother lived happily for nearly 95 years and we all knew how we cared for and loved her. It was our collective decision to have the last photograph with her in a happy mood, so as to ensure a good farewell to her,” said Rev. George Oommen, Varghese’s eldest son, in an interview with Deccan Herald.
The family clicked the photograph with the intention to give their beloved member a merry farewell, but little did they know that the photograph will go viral on the internet. The photo garnered a mixed bag of reactions. Many expressed their discontent with the collective emotion that was surrounding the casket. There was an equally large number of people who looked beyond what was visible and paid heed to the intention behind it.
While the picture garnered criticism, Kerala Education Minister V Sivankutty backed the family’s intention. Taking to his Facebook account, Sivankutty said, “What is happier than giving a farewell with a smile to those who lived happily?”
Sharing a post on Facebook, the minister, in the caption, roughly translated from Malayalam, wrote, “The ultimate truth in life is death itself. We usually bid adieu to a departed soul with tears. Death is parting, and sad. But it’s also a goodbye and a farewell. What is happier than giving a farewell with a smile to those who lived happily? This photo doesn’t deserve negative comments.”
Commenting on the reactions being accumulated by the picture on social media, Rev. George said that the family is unaffected by the negative comments that are being showered on the family photo. According to him, the users on the internet did not know the context behind the photo.