It’s vacation time and children are at home. They tend to become restless as they spend most of their time within the four walls.
Not only for the young ones, but also for the aged, the Eco Park at Tallakulam should be the ideal place for a pleasant outing in the evening. The greenery and breeze would give the visitors a reprieve from the day-long hot conditions.
Besides, the sprawling park gives old people a safe space for a leisurely stroll. Children could have fun running around and playing with balls. The play equipment should add to their joy.
Besides, the ‘dancing fountain’ where water dances to music played on public address system to different patterns of lighting. “Though we operate the fountain only in the weekends, we will try to make it a daily event in summer,” Corporation Chief Engineer K. Sakthivel said.
However, people these days cannot enjoy the artificial fountains that pump water to a height of 110 feet, claimed to be the highest in the State. This fountain used to double up as ‘Madurai’s Courtallam’ as breeze used to spray water outside the fountain tank. The children, as well as the adults, who enjoyed drenching themselves by standing at the right spot, are sure to miss it.
Though a handful of pedalling boats are available at the park, the quality of water would make it not so popular. Mr. Sakthivel said that a new contractor for the maintenance of the boating facility would be fixed and the facility improved to fit the ambience of Eco Park.
However, the Rajaji Park does not have a semblance of a children’s park. For, there is neither any grass nor many of the play equipment fit for children to use them. The sliding plates in some of the slides are either broken or rusted. The landing spaces below the slides do not have sand, making it dangerous for the playing children. The broken statues of animals, the missing swing, dry tanks of defunct fountains, and the dying plants make it not a place of joy.
Besides, the presence of teenage ‘couples’ behind bushes in the park is embarrassing for parents to take their children there. “We often find boys and girls in school uniform roaming inside the park,” a professor of Madurai Medical College said.
A Corporation official said that the local body has lost a good park for making it a commercial venture rather than a service. He said that the Corporation should not have given it to private contractor.
Corporation Commissioner S. Sebastine said that efforts would be taken to give a new lease of life to the park within 10 days, so that children could enjoy it during the vacation.