Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sivarathri was a big deal at Padur,OMR

At Padur Mahasivarathri was a three-day festival(Feb.20-22). Public rituals, a religious procession, amateur play, and music concerts marked the celebrations, at which the entire Padur (a panchayat town) on OMR participated.
Spiritual music set to filmi tunes rented the air throughout Padur for much of the day and well into the night during the festival.The roadside music system placed near Anagalaparameswari temple speaks for the decibel level.
A roadside bazar that sprouted along the road to the temple had on offer the usual items such as toys, food stuff, pots and plates,and also things that you don't usually find in a regular market place.
I took this photo from an MTC bus - we were caught up in the festival rush on Tuesday evening. My wife and took the 570 Kelambakkam-bound AC bus from Navalur around 6.30 p m. It took us nearly an hour to reach Mantri's, a trip that is normally covered in 15 minutes. Not only did we inch our way through Padur on OMR, the crush of people on street was such that we gave up all thoughts of getting out of the bus at Padur to get a feel of the carnival atmosphere.
We made it there early next morning, but the scene, still colourful, wasn't quite the same as the previous evening. For many of us at Mantri's the Sivarathri festival at Padur meant little more than traffic delays on OMR, and the garbage that people left behind in public places.
Sight such as this, on the morning after a night of festivities, ought to set us thinking of options. We could complain to panchayat, curse those lacking civic sense, grumble and stay severely away in gated isolation,complaining about the filth outside.
But by ignoring the filth in our neighbourhood we end up outsourcing the breeding ground for mosquito, flies (that we try to keep off our turf with fumigation). My sense is, much of the mosquito menace residents of A, B and C blocks face could be sourced to the stagnant water patch at the farmhouse adjacent to Mantri Synergy.
An ostrich-like attitude can only alienate us from Padur residents. Which isn't a good idea. It is in our long-term interest, and also those of other emerging neighbourhood residential communities to reach out, and work with Padur people and panchayat in a cluster approach to resolving issues such as public cleanliness, sewage and waste disposal/recycling.
I wonder how many of us have heard of The Ugly Indian.I hadn't, till I heard from my social activist friend E R Ramachandran in Mysore. He sent me link to this 6.30 min.YouTube: Why this Kolaveri Dell? The Hope Song - by The Ugly Indian.
After watching/listening to them you would Google, as I did, to find out who, and what this Ugly Indian is all about.


  1. Kudos to the initiative of The Ugly Indians. Its time we started!

    1. This is the type of response one want to have. It doesn't take more than a handful of us to initiate such a thing in our neighbourhood. Can we mobilize 10 young Mantri residents who can join me to meet Padur folks? Maybe, on a Sunday morning walk. We may not get done, what The Ugly Indians do. But a start can be made.