For many residents, an evening in the park has also become an opportunity for a walk down memory lane. A variety of programmes conducted in Chennai Corporation parks to celebrate 100 years of Indian cinema have attracted quite a crowd. T. Nagar Panagal Park, Natesan Park, Jai Nagar Park near Koyambedu bus terminus, Jeeva Park and Murasoli Park in Parambur are among the facilities that have begun hosting a range of events celebrating Indian cinema.
Parks such as Anna Nagar Tower Park will commence the programmes this week.
“A number of innovative programmes including mimicry, dance and song are staged in the parks free of cost. I come here every evening at 6 p.m. and leave by 11.30 p.m. It evokes memories of my childhood in my native village,” said K.V. Baskaran, a 70-year-old retired headmaster of a school in Mangadu.
Another visitor of Sivan Pooga, film co-director M.C. Rathinam, said the programmes inspire aspiring technicians. “We did not expect so many people to visit the parks to watch the show. Many who wish to enter the film industry visit the park,” said Mr. Rathinam.
“I watched the MGR film maatukara velan in Sivan Park today. I have watched it earlier too. But the park offered a unique experience. A large number of people including senior citizens visit the parks. Films such as Thiruvilayaadal, Paasamalar and Aayirathil Oruvan were screened,” said M. Gunasekaran, Corporation councillor of ward 131.
Other programmes staged in the parks are also a huge success. “The South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce requested more than 40 parks for the events. The Corporation has issued permission for a few of them,” said Mr. Gunasekaran.
“There is a scramble to get the best seats in the parks. People who visit the park for a walk every evening stay here late and watch the events. This is the first time such events are organised in the park,” said K. Malairajan, councillor of ward 127, where Jai Nagar Park is located.