Thursday, January 7, 2010

Another with a name

As far as I have been able to figure out, there are only two flyovers in the city which have been named for someone. No prizes for guessing the first one - it was the first flyover in the city. Most people however continue to refer to it by the name of the locality where it is at - Gemini. That practice continued with the new flyovers which came up, whether it was on Peters Road, or at IIT. I am not sure if the officials thought of any other names for those flyovers, but none have been christened, officially. For some reason, this flyover, which opened about a year ago, was treated differently. It was named. There is only one reason why they named it what they did.

Over 40 years ago, in January 1969, a statue of 'Kalaivanar' N.S.Krishnan was unveiled at this junction and ruled over it from a traffic island at the centre. It was the last public function attended by Aringar Anna, the then Chief Minister - and a mentor, at least in their minds, to several present-day politicians in the state. Kalaivanar himself is also a much revered personage; such a combination bestowed the statue with a great deal of emotional value. The construction of the flyover meant the statue had to be removed. It was brought back though it is now to a side of G.N.Chetty Road, under the flyover. If that wasn't enough to soothe the statue's sentiments, the flyover was also named after N.S.Krishnan - it is called 'Kalaivanar Mempaalam' (Kalaivanar bridge/flyover) - thus becoming the second named flyover in the city.

There are rumours of the flyover on Cenotaph Road being named after Moopanar, but there has not been any announcement of that yet. If you still haven't figured out the name of the first one, it is simple enough. The one at Gemini is called 'Anna Mempaalam'. Well, you can try to argue that it is just an extension of Anna Salai on which it is located, but that wouldn't get you too far!


Ram N said...

Even the one after Citi Centre has a name i presume "Maraimalai Adigal Palam" ... and the Saidapet Bridge too if my memory is right sir.

Shantaram said...

@ Ram: Was thinking only about the 'flyovers'.... Maraimalai Adigal Paalam is in Saidapet for sure, but I didn't know about the Maraimalai Adigal Mempaalam!