Questions posed by the unearthing of a flight of three steps near Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple are yet to be answered.

Some mysteries seem to be destined to remain mysteries forever. Unsolved, but tugging at that chain of curiosity deep inside, throwing up multiple questions. The story behind the flight of three steps, discovered while a trench to install security bollards was being dug near the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple, is slowly turning out to be one such mystery. The unearthing of the steps, along with red bricks and slabs of laterite, had kicked up quite a storm, with the grapevine buzzing whether they led to a “secret underground tunnel leading into the temple’s treasures,” and, in turn, excavations by the State Archaeology Department. Less than a week into the exercise, just when it began to think of wider excavations, security issues forced the authorities to put a stop to it all, bringing down curtains on what was developing into something of an archaeological thriller.

On a rainy Onam weekend last year, there were two parts of the sprawling zoo and museum premises that showed no signs of life: built prominently beside the entrance gates were ‘automated ticketing kiosks.’ They were closed through most of the peak holiday season, the time when the records are broken in terms of collection. This was the same time when crowd management is of paramount importance.

This happens on Sundays too. The machines were designed for vending tickets to enter the zoo, the Natural History Museum, Sree Chitra Art Gallery, KCS Panicker Gallery, and the Napier Museum. Holidays for others only means more amount of work for the department officials, but the kiosk operators, it seems, take a break on the days they are required the most.