A historical building used for performing the last rites of the deceased in Pallavaram remains neglected with the municipality not coming up with any plans to protect it. Residents fear that the building would collapse.
The ‘Irusandi Suppan Chetty Chathiram' near the Pallavaram railway station is nestled amidst shops on the railway station road. Except long-time residents of Pallavaram, others are not familiar with the building. With many encroachments around it, often those coming in search of the ‘chathiram' find it difficult to locate it.
Senior citizens who have submitted petitions to the municipality and the Kancheepuram district administration said that the chathiram was used as a centre by people coming from distant places and passing through this town to take some rest in the decades gone by.
With a couple of waterbodies nearby, it also served as a place for people to perform the last rites of the deceased. The chathiram, originally spread over 2.42 acres with a stone building, is over 100 years old, they said. Encroachments had reduced the structure's size considerably.
With no maintenance, there was the threat of the elegant stone building to crumble. Though sections of Pallavaram residents continue to use the facility, it presents a picture of neglect. Once, people used to bathe in the Ramasamy Chetti Kulam nearby, before coming to the chathiram. Following repeated representations and pressure from residents, Pallavaram Municipality provided a hand pump after water quality dipped in the Kulam.
The chathiram is the perfect place for miscreants to indulge in vices. The residents want Pallavaram Municipality to take better care of the facility. The chathiram was named after Irusandi Suppan Chetty, who belonged to a family that devoted a huge portion of the family resources for charity and public welfare, residents said, pointing out to documents in support of their claim. Municipal authorities said they would carry out an inspection of the facility along with revenue and Kancheepuram district officials.
Keywords: building restoration