Poet Sugathakumari's ancestral house renovated; plants in snake grove destroyed


Rajesh R Nair

When the visitors came to see the renovated house on Friday, they were stunned to see the concreted ground and stone laden pavement. Only the stub of the vines remained in the groves. The birds and squirrels were searching for a new home.

Stub of trees remaining after renovation works of Sugathakumari's ancestral house | photo: K Aboobackar

Pathanamthitta: Poet Sugathakumari had urged the people to protect the traditional snake groves and leave them untouched in order to save the rich biodiversity. She believed that the different types of birds, squirrels, bats, termite, earthworm, spiders, leech and other creatures in the groves should be protected. However, after the poet's demise, her wishes remained totally unfulfilled.

The Vazhuveli groves in her ancestral house in Aranmula has been renovated by the Archaeological Department. When the visitors came to see the renovated house on Friday, they were stunned to see the concreted ground and stone laden pavement. Only the stub of the vines remained in the groves. The birds and squirrels were searching for a new home.

A private agency was entrusted with the Rs 64-lakh worth renovation works of the poet's ancestral house. Many trees and vines were chopped down. Only a few saplings planted by some people who attended a ceremony here were left untouched.

Sugathakumari had instructed even a few days before her demise that no renovation that destroys the plants should be held in the place. Puja was held in the groves in April every year.

The poet visited the ancestral house in 2017 for the last time. Later, she could not make it due to physical ailments. However, Sugathakumari had strictly directed that any works done in the house and premises should be eco-friendly.

Meanhwile, the archaeological department explained that though they renovated the ancestral house of the poet, they are not responsible for the works done in the snake grove.

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