Kamala Nagar remains unchanged despite onslaught of modernisation, pollution and population explosion
One of the oldest residential areas, Kamala Nagar, still holds good for its inhabitants as majority of them have opted to stay on as owners preferring the serene atmosphere and close proximity to some major areas like Tallakulam, Tamukkam, Gandhi Museum, Collector’s Office and Anna Nagar.
In other words, Kamala Nagar is still intact and adorable.
The original owner V.N. Chidambaram Chettiar, has initially planned to built a huge cinema theatre. But given the proximity to the Gandhi Museum and Union Club, objections were raised in the early 70s and Mr. Chidambaram Chettiar eventually divided the two and half acres into 27 plots and named the area after his wife, Kamala.
“If the theatre had come, it would have been an important landmark in the city as it is in Chennai now,” says D.V. Balasubramanian, an early resident, who bought five-and-a-half cents in 1973 for Rs.2000.
Immune to changes
The areas outside Kamala Nagar have witnessed myriad changes but Kamala Nagar remains unperturbed by changes. Every house maintains big gardens and the wide roads, he says, adding that by virtue of its size, all the residents know each other well. There are only two roads – first and second streets and an interconnecting street.
The need for a Resident’s Welfare Association was never felt as there rarely have been demands to put forth. Even during power cuts and low voltage problems, authorities have obliged immediately with a separate transformer for the area particularly during the Chithrai exhibition.
“The area is so small and compact and with all our needs met, we have no grievances at all,” says B. Kamala, a resident of three decades. The area also lacks a possibility of extension as there are no empty plots or space around. People have remodelled their houses to suit the latest trend in construction.
Houses are on rent here for Rs.2,500 to Rs.4000. The groundwater level is reasonably good at 150 to 200 feet though the newly acquired brackish status may become a cause of concern in the future.
Security too is not a problem with most house owners deploying their own security guards. Same is the case with transportation as most residents are vehicle owners. Corporation supplied drinking water too has not given any problem so far.
The area has a unique feature – the presence of an elephant house. As the name suggests it has an elephant statue at the entrance, besides two elephants that are often rented out for marriage and festival occasions.
The peace and the overall cleanliness of the area, makes the residents a contented lot.S.S.KAVITHA