Conversations & Heritage

Lanes of Aminjikarai (Heritage Walk)

I went to a heritage walk on, ‘Lanes of Aminjikarai’, organized by ‘Nam Oor, Nam Veedu, Nam Kadhai’ on Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. This walk was lead by Ms. Thirupurasundari Sevvel. In this post I want to share some highlights and a few photos from the walk.

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Our walk started right opposite to the old Lakshmi Talkies theater, which you can see in the above photo. The theater is no more, but the name of the theater was inscribed on one of the walls of this building. The year of establishment was inscribed as 1939.

It seems Lakshmi Talkies was an important landmark in the city those days, and with the establishment of Grand theater near Roundtana these two were the theater hotspots of this area. I myself have watched a few movies in the Grand theater, and one member of the walk remembers watching a movie in the Lakshmi talkies too!

Aminjikarai region also included Naduvakkarai (now Annanagar) and Periyakudil (now Shenoy Nagar) villages, when it was established. Eventually these regions split from Aminjikarai. Since the Koovam river is so close, there was abundant fresh water supply (back then) for the houses and Temples around this area.

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This is the Sri Kamakshi Ekambareeswarar Temple at Aminjikarai. There is Varadaraja Perumal Temple also, in the street behind this one. These two Temples are the reason why Aminjikarai is also referred to as Chinna Kanchipuram.

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Since this region is very old, it follows town planning practices of those days. For example, there are lanes after every three/four houses, like the one shown above or sometimes within the houses. These lanes were used as thoroughfare. Since transportation options were limited in those days, people could use these lanes to reach neighboring streets quickly.

We also went into a couple of old houses in this region that were 250-300 years old. Here are some photos taken in those houses – Aminjikarai-Chennai-Heritage-Walk-4 Aminjikarai-Chennai-Heritage-Walk-5 Aminjikarai-Chennai-Heritage-Walk-6 Aminjikarai-Chennai-Heritage-Walk-7 Aminjikarai-Chennai-Heritage-Walk-8

Thanks to the organizer for such an enlightening walk. I am glad to learn some history about a region that is close to my home.

Chennai.buzz


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