Sunday, March 26, 2023

Home away

Between September and November of 2018, two facilities were opened in Chennai. They were named after two other states and symbolised a 'home' which residents of those states could expect to find when they visit Chennai. I expect this was necessary because Chennai has long been vilified - without much basis - as being unwelcoming of people from other parts of the country. 

Even ignoring that aspect, it is good to see the Odisha Bhawan and Assam Bhawan, close to each other on the Velachery-Tambaram Road. The feel of similarly named buildings in Delhi is very different. Meant as liaison offices for the governments of various states in the national capital, they reek of officialdom and power. These bhawans appear rather different, more down to earth and accessible by the regular residents of the states during their visits to Chennai. 

While they do have some rooms / suites meant for dignitaries, one could request for transit residence at Assam Bhawan by emailing the resident commissioner. And for the Odisha Bhawan, you could email them; what is even more interesting is that the Odisha Bhawan puts out the list of people who have been allotted accommodation on a regular basis! 


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