Special Correspondent

CUDDALORE: An ancient cemetery attached to St. Thomas Church at Ponneri near Pennadam in Thittakudi block was recently shifted to a new place. About 35 graves have been relocated.

The shift, a rare occurrence, was necessitated owing to the construction of a railway overbridge cutting across the cemetery. The shifting of the graves was done last Wednesday with the help of the district administration.

Fr. Joseph Raj, Parish Priest, told The Hindu that the Ponneri burial ground was catering for about 160 families belonging to the Catholic Christian denomination residing in the vicinity. The church falls under the jurisdiction of the Arch Diocese of Puducherry and Cuddalore.

As the overbridge construction would have to cut through the cemetery, he had made a representation to Collector P. Seetharaman, seeking an alternative site for the burial ground.

The new site was identified on the banks of the Vellar.