February 09, 2008

Marina Beach: How do we make it ours?

When was the last time you dug your hands deep into the sands of the Marina and played with it?
Or, took your kiddos to the beach and had pure fun building sand castles?
If you haven't indulged in the second act, do it now. Your kids aren't going to forgive you later in life!
Last Saturday had to be Beach Day for me. I had to judge the sand works that children were supposed to create on Elliots Beach in Besant Nagar.
When I arrived, I found that even the dads and moms had joined the kiddos and their enthusiasm was amusing all the young men who were pumping iron outside the Corporation gym here.
Most teams had built forts. One created a volcano, making good use of the shards of bricks and red tiles strewn in the corners - they made the lava!
My vote for the top prize ( and co-judge Nithya Balaji agreed) went to the team which had built a mud house with a terrace, having a courtyard, a well and a compound wall. It looked earthy and went with the theme that the 'Tree of Life' festival chose for this part of its events.
Elliots Beach and the Marina should be a hot spot of activities for children this summer. You need to pop up ideas and let them fly on the sands for children. Games, sand works, sculptures and snacks! And their day and yours will be made.But like many, we have our concerns.
Waste sinks into the sand, food leftovers line the seafront, broken bottles litter the corners. . .
Few seem bothered about our beach, our greatest natural treasure.
Our civic body is keen only to build, construct, beautify.
It has some thing like thirty crores in its account and it desperately wants to spend it. And spend it fast.
So it is rolling its plans in great haste. You should stop by to witness the rip-off that is going on in the name of 'beach beautification' opposite the Secretariat.They have ripped off a perfectly well laid pavement, dug up a slice of the lawn and re-laid the length with polished granite, creating raised platforms at intervals. A swank bus stop has come up too.
All this when this area does not have a beach. It is the fringe of the Madras Port!Similar plans are to roll out on the Marina, in Besant Nagar and in Thiruvanmiyur.
All this has the stuff I need to write a book titled - How to Spend Thirty Crores in 30 days. Any publishers keen to sign me on?


Revathi R said...

Hindustan Times (Mumbai Edition) brought out a 20 part series on the money involved in mega projects two months ago. Now the newspaper is bringing out the updates on these projects with photos. What's good and What's bad about the projects. The readers participate in the discussions enthusiastically.

Madras city is increasingly throwing entertainment programmes to the public. But less of awareness programmes!

I have mailed the link to the epaper edition of the Hindustan Times to your mail id.

Denkali said...

Let's go ahead and destroy that too. While we are about it, why not just tear down Presidency college and paint other buildings in party colours?

All that we need is a safe, clean and warm city to live in. Not these schemes to purloin public wealth.