I love this city. It is such a beautiful place.

I am in all senses what they call a “Thiruvananthapuram girl,” born, brought up and still living here. Yes, there are times when I have felt like the frog in the well, because it was only at the age of 24 that I first went out of the city to live in another place. Each time I go somewhere and return to the city, it is such a beautiful homecoming.

Memories

I still remember how depressed how I was when I failed to secure a first class in my Class 10 examinations. I was with my cousins in Kottayam when the results came. I just wanted to get back home. The relief I got when I reached Thiruvananthapuram was beyond words.

And I miss how we used to celebrate Onam in those days. It was so colourful. We used to have “Athapookkalams” for all 10 days of the festival and I remember how my father used to make and fly kites. We don’t even get to see kites in the city nowadays.

I think the rustic beauty of Thiruvananthapuram is lost. We are becoming a city. But still, I love this place as it was, as it is and as it will be, though I have to say that I don’t quite enjoy all those skyscrapers coming up and our old buildings getting demolished. Though development is inevitable, we should preserve our traditional buildings at the same time.

I believe we should maintain the greenery. We should not cut our trees. In the past 50 years, I have seen only one person getting killed by getting caught under a tree. But cutting off all the trees because of that is foolish. I believe residents’ associations should come forward and take the initiative to plant saplings and promote greenery on our roadsides.

Thiruvananthapuram is a hilly place, in fact a perfect place allowing free flow of water and drainage. But the roads are not maintained or tarred properly, which is why we have so much of water-logging. If they are tarred properly at least once, the issue would not be so big. And our traffic problem is not as bad as it is being made out to be. It is rare that we have traffic jams that go beyond a few minutes. Things that have changed, should change.

Thiruvananthapuram was once a city of bureaucrats, with most of the people here being government office employees. Now it is becoming a city of technocrats as well. And there are a few not so good changes too.

Mosquitoes, till about five years ago, were not such a menace. Though the Corporation does all the fogging and related activities, mosquitoes are becoming quite a problem now. And I remember how we used to drink water from taps while we were studying in Cotton Hill. Now, can we imagine drinking water from a tap without boiling it?

R. Sreelekha

Additional Director General of Police (Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau)

More In: KERALA | NATIONAL