Written by Vishwa Kiran.
We travel, to be happy and we used to explore so many things in our journey, but here it was quite different, it seems like a new world I was travelling to. I have heard about Dhanuskodi, perhaps people say it a “Haunting place” and we can still able to feel the moaning of more than 1800 people, who died in Tsunami. I don’t know how to describe it, but I am still longing to see that place. If you are a Thalassophile, then you must visit Dhanuskodi and see the most violent side of this merciless ocean.
After our journey through the Pamban railway bridge to Rameswaram, I was so much eagerly waiting to go to Dhanuskodi, which is 16km from Rameshwaram. Even though I was travelling through the Pamban bridge (the most dangerous railway bridge), I couldn’t be able to be present there, and I was just dreaming about that island. I have been to Rameswaram for so many times, but I haven’t been to Dhanuskodi and this was my first time to that place, after hearing all those past nostalgic memories, that island holds.
“Dhanuskodi, which was also called as “The Ghost Village”. This name was given, not because of any devil inside the island, this village was once severely affected by Tsunami in December 23, 1964 at 12 AM. And Tamil Nadu government declared it as a desolated zone. When the tsunami attacked Dhanuskodi, the waves of the ocean raised 7 meter above the ground and no one has noticed the arrogant roar of the sea, because it occurred at night. The Science says that, before the occurrence of tsunami, the sea water will be sucked inside for some or more distances, because of the crack occurred between two tectonic plates, and in that happening many sea creatures will be left on ground and some will enter into the fishermen villages. Due to this, nature’s warning, some of the people were able to survive in that natural disaster.
We cannot say it, a village because it was once a town. It has ports, post office, railway stations etc.., Once Rameshwaram was a village and Dhanuskodi was the town, but now it’s not the same as it was before.
Dhanuskodi still holds the remnants of those construction buildings like railway stations, churches etc.., Some of the lands and houses were still found inside the ocean. The tsunami engrossed the lands and the world map of this village altered, by this terrible disaster. And this was known when another tsunami attacked Dhanuskodi in 2004(it occurred in Indian ocean, while in 1964, it occurred in Bay of Bengal). As I said, before the occurrence of tsunami, the sea water will be sucked inside the sea and some of the lands will become visible. In that, the peoples in the Dhanuskodi able to find the leftover of houses and many constructions buildings which was sunk inside the sea in 1964. Because of this everyone says it, a most haunted place, where the debris of those building present there will make you to feel the moaning of the sufferers”. This was the statement given by our auto driver Anna(brother), when I was travelling from Rameshwaram to Dhanuskodi. Even though, I already knew the history of Dhanuskodi, I heard with complete silence, because it made me to listen, when an experienced man like him described it and he was once a fisherman. Due to some personal reason, he had started driving auto. It was really nice to hear it from a fisherman.
Those words were so deep and I was so much in urge to visit that uninhabited village. Even though it was declared as an abandoned village, still 234 families of the fishermen are living there because of their love for fishing and they can’t just like that leave the land and go somewhere else for living. This was their traditional profession and they have mastered it for so many years of training.
I was travelling in a road, in which both the side of the road is covered by ocean, it seems so much exciting for me in seeing the nature’s beauty. And in Dhanuskodi, you can see the meeting point of Bay of Bengal and Arabian sea. The end point of the road resembles as two long narrow sticks joined at one point in the end. Left side you can able to see Indian ocean and on your right side you can see Bay of Bengal (Always Roaring arrogantly).
At last we entered the village and saw many huts and shops. In 2016, Dhanuskodi became a one of the “must-visit” tourist spots, because of the well-grooming road built by our Indian government. Before that there was no road to travel to Dhanuskodi, you have to rent a jeep or van to go to Dhanuskodi, because you have travel on the sea water. By the effort of the government, the fishermen able to put a shop and they got another way for their income.
I found some of the hotel and the smell of the fried fish and it just dragged me towards it. But I am so eager to visit the end point of India. At last we reached the pillars of Ashoka(the end point of India) and I ran towards the Bay of Bengal(which was there on my right side) and heard its arrogant roaring. Even though we don’t know how the tsunami will be like, but it made me feel the mourning of those people who suffered. When I was admiring the waves, my eyes shed a tear and I don’t know why whenever I admire the ocean, I can’t control my tears. I fell in love with the ocean because of its eternity and I slept in the bed of sand and closed my eyes for some time and heard the pleasant natural sound of the waves. It made me feel less and it made my heart light.
And we went to our left side, to the Indian ocean and we saw fishermen preparing to go for fishing. And I heard them saying, due to the high raising waves in the Bay of Bengal, they were going to Indian ocean for fishing.
I saw the pleasant and small waves approaching me. It’s not so arrogant and so I can able to place my leg in the water and we were able to walk some distance inside the ocean. As in Bay of Bengal we were restricted to go near the waves, because it’s too dangerous to go near to it.
While returning, we planned to go to the old church, Railway station and the port. While returning from the end point of India, we felt fulfilled of our longing desires. I left there, by waving a good bye to my good companion (The ocean) and I said we’ll meet again.
In the middle way of Rameshwaram road, we stopped. We saw there a complex of shops, in which they sell sea products like Shell, key chains, stones etc…,
I bought a saligram stone, which was meant to be a lucky stone and I bought it for my remembrance of being in this island.
We saw an old unfinished church there, it’s not actually unfinished. It’s the leftovers and the mercy shown by the innocent waves. It seems too old and the entrance itself reflects the pain, it suffered. Those newly built churches reflect the sanctity and its architectural creations. But it resembled as left outs or as it lost the proclivity of its holiness. It looked as completely vandalized. But it still holds the history of this island. We saw an old man sitting outside the church, he claims himself as he was the one among who survived in that natural calamity. We saw him sharing his experience to the visitors. I didn’t hear much about his sayings. Because the appearance of the church made me look stumbled. So, I can’t get his words into my mind. So, I just walked away from there and saw more houses looked damaged. And I walked some distance towards the ocean. I saw the Samuthram (Ocean) still roaring.
I relaxed myself sitting on the sand and my friends started to chat among themselves. But I can’t enter in their conversation and I was just lost within me and again I slept in the bed of the sand. In my dream I used to see a girl in the boat calling me to sail with her and I used to call her Samuthra (the goddess of sea). I always tell about her to my friends. But on that day when I closed my eyes, I became unconscious for a minute. I saw her again in my “mini dream”. When I saw her in my dream, I suddenly woke up and I felt a tear already dropping from my eyes. This was really a great experience for me.
On that day onwards, whenever I felt sad or rejected, I just hear the melody of the natural waves, I felt light and fulfilled. This was my life changing journey and my life changed after that.
Then we got late and its 5 30 PM and It is dangerous to stay here at night, Because of the raising waves and the policemen told us to leave and so we returned to Rameshwaram. On our way to Rameshwaram, I felt satisfied and but my friends told we haven’t seen some places in there. I told we can come again here soon. Everyone nodded with excitement. We waived a big bye to Dhanuskodi and we happily returned to Rameshwaram.
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I am Vishwa Kiran. My hobby is reading books. I love to travel and I am a Thalassophile. My aim is to become a content writer and my ambition is to become an author. I like to write and I am a serious writer.