Monday, November 30, 2015

Ghost town Dhanushkodi near Rameshwaram

Dhanushkodi, near Rameshwaram was a major sea link to Srilanka and a trading hub in South India in the 1960s. Dhanushkodi was the main town and Rameshwaram was secondary town. It is believed that Lord Rama built his famous bridge- Rama Sethu to Srilanka from Dhanushkodi.

Lot of things changed in December 1964 when a severe cyclone stuck the coastal town, submerging large part of town, drowning a moving passenger train with hundreds of passengers in it. Over 1800 people lost their lives in the accident and the town had to be abandoned. (Full details on Wikipedia)

Today only ruins to tell us the story. Visitors to Rameshwaram also visit Dhanushkodi. We visited Dhanushkodi during early November and here're some pictures of whatever remains of this town.
Above: Remains of the church
Below- behind view of church building
A floating stone- this piece of stone floats on water- reason unknown.
Watertank remains

A small Hanuman temple is largely intact even today.

A goat that had broken leg

Above: part of the railway station building
Below- new roads being paved till the end.
A nice road is being paved- should  be ready in a few months. Once ready it should make commute to Dhanushkodi a breeze. A memorial for Dr APJ Abdul Kalam is also likely to come-up somewhere in Rameshwaram/Dhanushkodi

Today a dozen or so makeshift shops operate in Dhanushkodi trying to sell various stuff- sea shells and other ornamental to tourists. I found coconut made monkeys above very cute. Tender coconut cost is Rs 25 only, at par with mainland. So vendors are not overcharging in most cases.
It is a hard experience to be part of a disaster that takes away your village, your loved ones and forcing you to relocate. For those who had their childhood in Dhanushkodi and had to abandon village after the cyclone accident, Dhanushkodi is much more than ruins or tourist attraction. Tourists come and go, but for them it is not that easy. We spent about 40 minutes here and returned with heavy heart. Drive to Dhanushkodi was an experience in itself- read about it here.


Ananya Kiran said...

Great write up n awesome pics

Leopard Prints for Winter

Indrani said...

Really sad!
A major tragedy indeed.
I hope to visit some day.

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Thanks Ananya and Indrani

Arun Prasadh said...

Indeed a ghost town. Yeah the floating stone is an interesting this to watch. We got a small stone from the 5 face hanuman temple.

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Good to know Arun

Sri Kri said...

Really a sad day when the cyclone stuck this coastal town.Planning to visit this place.Thanks for sharing.

VJ Sharma said...

This is first time I heard of it and it's sad.

Floating stones are found in different parts of our country and there are different stories associated.

Nice post, as always !

Arun said...

The coconut made monkeys are really nice! This place looks quite interesting.. Need to visit soon ..!

My Unfinished Life said...

I did not visit dhanuskodi whem i went to glad to read it here...looking back I still would not have gone...