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Monday, June 3, 2019

Thiruvallikkeni Ganganna mantapam & theru ora nair kadai !!


இன்று சுமார் 50 வயதை தொட்டவர்கள் அல்லது தாண்டியவர்களுக்கு பழைய ஞாபகங்களை இந்த பதிவு வரவழைக்கலாம்.  அன்றைய பலர் பள்ளிக்கூடத்திற்கு வெறும் காலுடனோ அல்லது ஹவாய் செப்பல் அணிந்தோ சென்றுகொண்டிருந்த காலம்.  பல பள்ளிகளில் வெள்ளை சட்டை (காக்கி அல்லது நீல நிக்கர்) சீருடை.  ஒரே ஒரு இங்க் பேனா ~ கேம்லின் என்றால் மிக்க மகிழ்ச்சி.  பைலட் பணக்காரர்களின் எழுதுகோல்.

திருவல்லிக்கேணியில் கங்கைகொண்டான் மண்டபம் ஒரு சிறப்பு வாய்ந்த கட்டிடம்.  பல புறப்பாடுகளின்போது ஸ்ரீ பார்த்தசாரதி பெருமாள் இளைப்பாறுமிடம்.  இதன் அருகே திருவல்லிக்கேணி காய்கறி மார்க்கெட். இந்த பதிவு, மண்டபத்தின் ஒரு புறமிருந்த கடைகள் பற்றியது  !!!

Udaiyar Rajendra Chola I  [Rajendra Chozhan 1]was a famous  emperor of  Chola kingdom that ruled South India (Present day Tamil Nadu, Andhra pradesh, Kerala, Part of Karnataka and Telangana).  Rajendran  succeeded his father Rajaraja Chola I to the throne in 1014 CE. During his reign, he extended the influence of the Chola empire to the banks of the river Ganga in North India and across the Indian ocean to the West and South East Asia, making the Chola Empire one of the most powerful maritime empires of India.  He defeated Mahipala, the Pala king of Gauda in present day Bengal and Bihar, and to commemorate his victory he assumed the title of Gangaikondachola  literally the Chola who conquered the (kingdoms near) Ganga and built a new capital city called Gangaikonda Cholapuram.

The street behind Sri Parthasarathi Temple [with entrance of Sri Azhagiya Singar sannathi] is TP Kovil Street ~ Thelliya Singar Kovil Theru, named after deity Sri Thelliya Singar [Sri Azhagiya Singar / Narasimhar].. .. it has Barathiyar illam [where Mahakavi Subrahmanya Barathiyar lived] (and opposite to that SYMA medical centre).. .. one one corner it has Gangai kondan mantapam – the place where Thiruvallikkeni Emperumans take rest during purappadu.

In our younger days, we never had this plethora of choices or things that the modern day children have.  In our schooling days – the writing instrument was an ink pen – most happily used  a single pen throughout the year and the second one, a luxury was there at hand for the exams. Camlin was a star brand – the Japanese Hero was generally outside the reach of ordinary mortals. If there were to be an accidental fall, the nib would have to be mended – usually by pressing it hard;  replacing the pin nib was the last resort.  One had to frequently fill the ink-pen – not many bought  the ink pot (the bottle) – the road corner shop would do filling  at 5 naya paise !

Some old pens would leak and stain your fingers, worser still, when you run for school or  play with pen in the shirt pocket, ink could spill and spoil the white uniform shirt.  When the ink was depleted and low, the flow would be unusually high and may spoil the note book.  The nib if not in proper shape, may not enable writing smoothly. A drop of water falling on the well-written notebook could spell doom..... yet,  one loved writing with a Fountain pen and teachers insisted that any other type of pen would spoil handwriting and by force students had to write only with ink pens.

TP Koil Street had plenty of landmarks – Thavana Uthsava bungalow, Officers’ laundry, Bommi hotel, Ladies technical institute, NKT National Boys High School, Sri Vadivudai Amman stores, Sri Raghavendra Mutt [after mid 1970s], Excellent stores, Dikshitulu ayurvedic hospital, BR Tea [1980s], Om Muruga Stores, Sri Nataraja Stores, Ayyapillai charities kalyana mantap, Balussery Chit fund, Pillaiyar koil, Gangaikondan Mantap, Ganganna market (vegetable market)  .. .. .. and to the locals Nair kadai and KVK Chari optical abutting Gangaikondan mantap.

Not sure of the origin of this ‘ Gangai Kondan Mandapam’ -  the place of rest for Sri Parthasarathi Perumal - during important purappadus (processions); also used for some religious discourses and the like. Thiruvallikkeni is part of Thondaimandalam and this building has no Chola connection (being of a much later origin). In Kanchipuram, we have Gangaikondan Mandapam, the resting place for Lord Deva Perumal (Sri Varadharajar) and probably in tune with Thondaimandala following - this mantap also has the same name.

Old order changeth ~ things have been changing in Triplicane too in the past few decades . …  in late 1970s, when we went to Hindu High School, have often stopped at this shop [Nair kadai] abutting the compound of Gangaikondan mantap (opp to vegetable market) – those days one fill of ink used to be charged at 5 naya paise.  One cannot run after such fill, as ink would come out and spoil the white shirt uniform worn.  Years later, my first spectacle was bought at KVK Chari after eye tests – and first time, when I wore my glasses, could see lot more things ! is a different story.

Today evening as I stopped at Triplicane vegetable market, somehow felt sad to see hammer falling on that old shop side – the Nair shop is gone, so also that Specs shop (though KVK Chari perhaps closed his shop a couple of decades back !) – may be that road corner shop might start afresh .. ..

Old order changeth ! ~ yielding place to new !!

With regards – Triplicanite – S. Sampathkumar
3rd June 2019.

1 comment:

  1. Superb recollection Sir. I also did schooling in 60s and early seventies and i am aware of these shops and their offerings. You brought them out wonderful. Thank you.

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