Madras city and surroundings had many natural water bodies once upon a time. Over time, most of them have been encroached upon, leveled, built upon “developed” or abused in many ways.
So, I was happy to see a lake (eri – ஏரி) in Nemam village being protected by a proper bund and the water being used for irrigating rice fields in this area. I have also heard about several initiatives by the Government, NGOs, and citizen groups, to protect and retrieve several water bodies in the city. Let us wish them luck and offer whatever support they need.
Weaving through the narrow lanes of Srinivaspuram near Santhome beach can be an unpleasant experience. However, the same shanty town seen from the luxurious Leela Palace room windows makes a pleasing sight.
It is a small hill near Tambaram Sanatorium. You can approach it through the TNHB road off the Chennai Nagapattinam highway near the Export Processing Zone. To reach the top of the hill one has to climb about 150 steps. May not be an issue for most people. Senior citizens and those with ailments need to take care. There is a well kept small temple on top. On a Sunday morning, we could see a few devotees and many fitness freaks climbing the hill along with our Photowalkers.
The view from the hill is really worth the climb. The above image is looking North towards MEPZ and Peria Eri. The lake is close to Thiruneermalai.
The weather was fickle. Alternating between sunshine and showers. Not an ideal weather for a long drive into the unknown suburbs. We were, however, determined.
The Environmentalist Foundation of India had invited the alumni of Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad to the Arasankazahni lake to see the kind of work they are doing.
Spending about an hour there with them we were highly impressed by the commitment of the team lead by Arun Krishnamurthy, Ram, and others. We also joined them in planting Vettiver and Koonthal panai on the lake bund.
They reiterated that the objective is not to create a picturesque tourist spot but to reclaim a sustainable bio-sphere for the benefit of all stakeholders.