The recent visit of Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to the temple town of Srirangam was God-sent not only for the 34,000 beneficiaries who could enjoy the munificence of the State government in terms of various Governmental assistance and the thousands of devotees who could get ‘annadhanam’ virtually round-the-clock but also for hundreds of local residents and devotees who pass through the Thiruvadi Street.

A small bit of land on the Thiruvadi Street, probably measuring 5 metres X 1 metre, adjoining the ramparts of Rajagopuram, has been used as a public convenience for long.

Apart from causing intolerable stench, the scene normally witnessed there in the mornings has been causing acute embarrassment to the women folk. Though many officials and politicians should have passed through that area, none has so far bothered to do anything about it.

But the scenario changed all of a sudden, couple of days before the scheduled visit of the Chief Minister.

Lo and behold, there appeared a beautiful, lush-green meadow like structure to occupy that space.

And a few small sprinklers that accompanied the meadow have proved to be the icing on the cake.

This is a telling testimony to the efficiency of our officials that they can find a solution for anything if they set their mind to it or if they feel that they might have to face some unpleasant moments at the hands of their higher-ups for failing to set right certain issues.

The presence of four Olympian hockey players – V. J. Philips, B. P. Govinda, Charles Cornelius and N. Mohamed Riaz – added sheen to the four day senior inter-district men’s hockey championship hosted by Unified Tiruchi District Hockey at Anna Stadium here recently. All four formers hockey stalwarts had represented the country at many Olympics and international hockey tournaments.

As India was ruling the roost in hockey in the 1960’s to 1980’s these players wielded lot of influence among the masses and were household names. Hockey fans of the central districts had a golden opportunity to watch mercurial forwards Philips and Govinda in action, when Tiruchi district hockey team played an exhibition match against the visiting Sri Lankan national team at Anna stadium in the late 1970’s.

The stadium was jam-packed. Both of them such popularity that they had to be whisked away after the match under police security. Unified Tircuhi District Hockey utilised their presence and felicitated them at the valediction of the tournament.

The presence of these legendry hockey players is a morale booster and provided inspiration to all of us, claimed hockey players of various districts who participated in the tournament.

Blood pressure and diabetes are some of the most common lifestyle ailments afflicting people. How to tide over the trouble and maintain health? Vice-Chancellor of Tamil University, M. Thirumalai, has enough experience in tackling blood pressure. “One should always be happy and cheerful to avoid the impact of blood pressure,” he says.

To drive home this point, he explained two posts he had held earlier. During his tenure as Head of Tamil Department, he suffered irritation and impatience as professors and faculty members quite often failed to cooperate with him. He was later elevated as Additional Controller of Examinations – a more responsible assignment. Though he felt overburdened in this assignment, he did not suffer a bit due to blood pressure, because he enjoyed the cooperation of all colleagues.

“My cheerfulness was responsible for the relief from blood pressure,” he said. Prof. Thirumalai was in Tiruchi last week to inaugurate the ‘Muthamizh Vizha’ at National College.

Your purse is sure to weigh less on entering the Tiruchi airport due to various reasons, but the first pinch inevitably starts right at the entrance after passing the gates.

Conventionally, airports charge a parking fee for vehicles that halt in the premises for over three or five minutes.

Sometimes a ticket with the time of entry punched on it is issued. If the vehicle for pick up or drop exceeds the time limit, which is checked at the exit, a parking fee is remitted. But the parking fee collectors at Tiruchi airport are as enthusiastic as they come and proffer a ticket to every passing vehicle.

While some manage to wave off the ticket on the premise of getting dropped, not all are lucky, particularly those with luggage.

Passengers have to cough up Rs.40 or Rs.10 for merely entering the airport, depending on the vehicle being a two-wheeler or auto.

While a board by Airport’s Authority of India right next to the collection point reads ‘vehicles for pick up, drop or parking anywhere in the premises will be charged parking fee if they park for more than 300 seconds’, this is ignored.

Officials may insist on passengers deferring a written complaint, but there is little time to spare in search of a grievance box when there is a flight to board.

Though events were spread over four days, the valediction of Festember 2012 at National Institute of Technology - Tiruchi ended on day three. How was that possible?

Students just hit upon the idea of Day Zero when the gala celebration actually began. Usage of the term is not new; Day Zero being the title of the debut film directed by Bryan Gunnar Cole in 2007. The reality behind introducing the term for Festember 2012 is this: The Institute administration had a technical problem in permitting the festival beyond a maximum of three days.

And the ingenuity by the student organisers that reflected in coining the term in a situation of necessity found appreciative takers in the administration.

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