A pictorial tour of Karaikudi palaces

Bijoy Ghosh | Updated on May 21, 2019 Published on May 21, 2019

The Chettinad region well known for its 19th-century mansions, with wide courtyards and spacious rooms remains a tourist attraction though most of the areas wear a deserted look..Visitors look at the interiors in awe wondering how the paintings in the ceiling, the stained glasses, the timber for the courtyard could have been to such a remote place in Tamil Nadu. With most from the community staying in metros and making rare visits, the houses are maintained by caretakers or faithful managers mainly from their community. Some families regroup during festivals .

To visit the Chettinad palace in Kanadukathan in Sivaganga belonging to MAM Ramaswamy and family, one requires prior permission while the Athangudi palace is open to public for a fee. For a while, the palaces were rented out for film shoots but with crew being careless during shooting, this too is being avoided. Morover, skilled labour to do repairs is diminishing. A few bungalows are being converted into hotels and coffee shops.

Photos: Bijoy Ghosh

Published on May 21, 2019