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Monday, March 18, 2013

Triplicanites wait endlessly for Sri Parthasarathi Post Office

Today’s [18th Mar 2013] The Hindu has an article titled ‘An endless wait for a building on its own’……….it is another story of lethargic attitude or perhaps some stonewalling of a public facility.  Before you read the article [here is the link wait for Post Office  ~ and it is reproduced in its entirety down below] – a lengthy introduction would make you understand the significance of this   

How times change ! modern day youngsters may perhaps never understand ‘the ways of writing and communication of yore’ ~ the days of post cards / inland letters / covers / telegrams / Greeting cards / money orders / postal orders and the like….. you should have lived outside your home at least 3 decades ago, and should have received a letter from your parents / siblings / loved ones to understand the sentiments……….and how much the entire World revolved around the Posts & Telegraphs.

Once a mammoth Govt Dept employing most people next to Indian Railways, the Department of Posts has lost most of its pristine glory now.  It for sure has more than 1lakh 50 thousand offices, of which a high % is in rural areas.   The post man was once the most respected and known person in any village as people waited for his arrival expectantly everyday..  The highest post office in the world is in Hikkim, Himachal Pradesh, India at a height of 15,500 ft (4,700 m) (postal code 172114). Recall the last time, you walked into any Post Office for transacting any business ~ do you have a Postal SB Account or at least a PPF account now ??

History reveals that it was way back in 1712, Governor Harrison first started a Company Postal Service in Madras to carry mail to Bengal by dak runner. By 1736, a postal system of sorts was in place with a somewhat greater vision. In 1774, a system of charging postage on private letters began. Decades later the postal rules were in place  ~ Chennai General Post Office was initially opened in Fort St. George Square, just outside the Sea Gate, on 1 June 1786.  Wikipedia reveals that to expand its services, the Madras Post Office, as it was generally called, opened a couple of receiving offices (as opposed to full service offices that also delivered mail) in March 1834, one at Hunter's Road in Vepery and another in Royapettah on what is now known as Westcott Road.

Now the intention of this post is not to trace the history of Indian Posts………but its relevance to Thiruvallikkeni and the story on the search for a building housing the same. 

Now a search on Sulekha pages shows the following post offices [certainly not the exhaustive list]:  Adambakkam PO; Adyar PO; Alandur PO; Alwarthirunagar PO; Ambattur PO; Aminjikarai PO; Annanagar PO; Annasalai PO; Mylapore PO; Mandaveli PO; Sholinganallur PO; Sowcarpet PO; T Nagar South PO; Tambaram PO; Taramani PO; Triplicane PO; West Mambalam PO ……….. simply there could be hundreds of post offices but to those residents of Triplicane – the building that housed Thiruvallikkeni Thapal Nilayam is a monument and many would have green stories kindling nostalgia. Read my earlier post :

There is enough clues strewn over….the one that functioned at Big Street, Triplicane was known as ‘Sri Parthasarathi Koil Post Office’  ….. only one of its genre named not after the locality but after our presiding deity Sri Parthasarathi.  The building housing the Post Office in Big Street became dilapidated, was demolished and now has become a car park. The PO was later housed in a smaller, old building in Hanumantharayan Kovil Street off Kairavini Pushkarini, the temple tank.  It certainly was not a proper accommodation ~ leaked during rainy days and after days of difficulty, moved to the premises of Triplicane PO in Triplicane High Road, functioning as a small unit. 

People of Triplicane, including pensioners and others have been representing for revival of Sri Parthasarathi Swami Post Office and there have been various reports  that the building in Car Street, newly built as staff quarters for Thirukoil staff was to have a Nationalised Bank in its first floor and the Post Office from the ground floor.  Many representations have been made by the recipients and there has been news every now and then that it is pending with one Dept or the other.  Now read the report of the day in The Hindu and you will have your own views on this

With regards – S. Sampathkumar


‘An endless wait for a building on its own’
The Hindu ~ 18.03.2013

Over the past three years, several residents of Triplicane have had a question on their minds that has gone unanswered: when will the Parthasarathy Koil post office start functioning from its own premises?  Though a new building was selected for the nearly century-old post office several months ago, it continues to function out of a counter at the Triplicane post office.

Patronised by several senior citizens, the post office, named after a temple, was to begin operations at a building owned by the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments department (HR and CE) on Car Street, Triplicane. But the wait, say residents, seems endless. Since the post office has been confined to within Triplicane post office, several senior citizens say they have had to walk at least 2 km to carry out postal transactions.

T.J. Ramani, a resident of Triplicane, said that people living in over 25 streets, including Venkatarangam Pillai Street, T.P. Koil Street and Sunguvar Street, walk or pay exorbitant amounts for an autorickshaw ride to get to the counter. Pensioners said they had to walk on the busy bus route road or shell out Rs. 30-40 for the distance. Having their post office on Car Street would make it much easier for them, they said. Besides carrying out postal transactions, several residents use the post office to pay their electricity and telephone bills.

The post office acquired its name as it was first housed in a building owned by temple authorities on Big Street. In 2004, it was shifted to a building on Hanumantharayan Koil Street after the earlier structure became dilapidated. In 2010, following a burglary, the post office was once again shifted to its present premises at the Triplicane post office.

Officials of the postal department said that the post office, which has over 3,000 saving accounts, will function in a 500 sq.ft. space on the ground floor of the new building belonging to the HR and CE department. The facility will have four postal staff members. “We are waiting for the HR and CE department to hand over the premises after which we will begin operations in a few days,” an official said.

An official of the HR and CE department said the proposal to start the post office has been sent to the government. Once the government order is obtained, the post office would begin operations there.


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  4. About more than 2 years ago, they said the building in Car St [Ex TUCS] is earmarked for Post Office; there were opentalks of the local councillor Mr MGR Vasan and MP Mr Va Maithreyan having taken up with higher authorities. Till date nothing has happened.. while Temple is unable to connect rent from its property; thi is another form of loss ~ will the Govt take action against HR&CE officials responsible for loss of revenue to temples........ who is protecting them... Cheena

  5. This morning a friend of mine in Triplicane, showed this.. and am very sad reading this. Worst maintenance and bad administration - Balji

  6. Am pleased with your blog. Thanks for sharing useful information through this.

  7. thanks sampath for this news item.

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