A Perambalur farmer’s unique hobbies come as a surprise – The New Indian Express

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Express press service

PERAMBALUR: It is not uncommon to see a farmer collecting magazine articles or newspaper clippings on best farming practices. But, R Manickam (55) from Aranarai village in Perambalur district surprises you with his hobbies of more than three decades – notaphilia and numismatics.

Besides growing peanuts on his one-acre land, he nurtured his love for old banknotes and coins from various countries. Manickam says he has a collection of 250 old banknotes from more than 50 countries such as India, Malaysia, United States, Singapore, Canada, Thailand, Hong Kong, Italy, India. Germany, Japan and China and hundreds of parts.

Speaking to TNIE, he says, “I went to Saudi Arabia in 1986 and worked as a driver. I couldn’t get enough income and also worked as a laborer in a garden. The owner of the garden was passionate about notaphilia and introduced him to me, he also gave me some old banknotes, which was the beginning of my collection.

Manickam says he was initially not interested in notaphilia. However, he slowly developed an interest working in Saudi Arabia and then Malaysia.

“I came to India in 1996. But my hobby multiplied. I used to attend exhibitions of banknotes and coins in Salem, Tiruchy and Coimbatore and had used to get everything I could for my collections. I get excited just looking at my collection, and also introduced this hobby to my son and family members. I went on tour on Thailand and Singapore, from where I added more banknotes and coins to
my collection. I ask the government to set up exhibitions to raise awareness of notaphilia and numismatics in each district. A visit to such exhibits will be a learning experience for the future generation,” Manickam said.

When told of suspicious pieces in his collection, he says, “I’m going to get an expert in this area and weed out all the counterfeits. I want my collection to be 100% authentic.”

PERAMBALUR: It is not uncommon to see a farmer collecting magazine articles or newspaper clippings on best farming practices. But, R Manickam (55) from Aranarai village in Perambalur district surprises you with his hobbies of more than three decades – notaphilia and numismatics. Besides growing peanuts on his one-acre land, he nurtured his love for old banknotes and coins from various countries. Manickam says he has a collection of 250 old banknotes from more than 50 countries such as India, Malaysia, United States, Singapore, Canada, Thailand, Hong Kong, Italy, India. Germany, Japan and China and hundreds of parts. Speaking to TNIE, he says, “I went to Saudi Arabia in 1986 and worked as a driver. I couldn’t get enough income and also worked as a laborer in a garden. The owner of the garden was passionate about notaphilia and introduced him to me. He also gave me some old banknotes, which was the start of my collection. Manickam says he was initially not interested in notaphilia. However, he slowly developed an interest working in Saudi Arabia and then Malaysia. “I came to India in 1996. But my hobby multiplied. I used to attend exhibitions of banknotes and coins in Salem, Tiruchy and Coimbatore and used to get whatever I could for my collections. I get excited just looking at my collection and have also introduced this hobby to my son and family members. I went on tour to Thailand and Singapore, from where I added more banknotes and coins to my collection. I ask the government to set up exhibitions to raise awareness of notaphilia and numismatics in each district. A visit to such exhibits will be a learning experience for the future generation,” says Manickam. When told about some suspicious coins in his collection, he said, “I’m going to get an expert in this field and weed out all the fakes.” I want my collection to be 100% authentic.”

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