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Ghost Town

A Tourist’s Introduction To Dhanushkodi, The Ghost Town

Dhanushkodi is a famous ghost town situated in the south-eastern tip of the Pamban island in the state of Tamil Nadu in India. It is situated 29 kilometres away from Talaimannar in Sri Lanka. The railway line that connected the town to Pamban station was destroyed by a disastrous cyclone and a passenger train that carried 100 people drowned in the sea in 1964. A trip to the island of Dhanushkodi fills the traveller with wonder when he or she notices and soaks in the peace and tranquil air of the place contrasted with the awe and fear that arises from the remnants of the town that was destroyed by the fierce cyclone. But there are still inhabitants in the island who depend on the island’s produce and water for nutrition.

How does Dhanushkodi look like today?

The small island of Dhanushkodi is lined by the Bay of Bengal on one side and the Indian Ocean on the other. Dhanushkodi is situated about 20 kilometres away from Rameshwaram and is part of the most fascinating coastlines in Tamil Nadu. The island has about 50 fisher folk along with their families, which sums up to a population of about 500 at most.

Mythology is tied very closely with this place, as it is believed that the Lord Rama pointed the tip of his bow towards this island and according to that Hanumaan built the mythical bridge that connected India to Sri Lanka across the ocean. A man can travel to Sri Lanka by travelling only 31 kilometres from this place.

A tourist visiting Dhanushkodi is a mind-blowing experience because of the brilliant views of the azure sea accompanied with the visible and evident desolation of the place, which arouses sadness of a once-flourishing town, which got wiped off in one night. This place was a major hub for entry to the country before 1964 when the infamous cyclone hit the area taking away with it the railway track, the steam engine train and all the residences of the village.

The people who live in Dhanushkodi

Only a handful of people who are mostly fishermen and women live in the area. The population sums up to a meagre 500. One can reach Dhanushkodi by foot along the sea coast or in jeeps and tempos that are used by the fishermen. A ride of about 20 kilometres is a straight road, which leads to this desolate town.

The houses here are all huts with thatched roofs. Children play about in the sand and run up and down the beach to collect sea shells. The main source of income for the families living here comes from seafood fishing and from the limited number of tourist visits who hire the villagers’ vehicles.

Sweet drinking water is available to the people here. This is gathered by digging out sand with the hands to make a pit until the water level is reached.

The views that one gets from this place is absolutely stunning. One can see the sky changing colours during sunsets that happen over the ocean as he or she shudders to think how such a serene form of Nature can unleash such violent forces upon a land so versatile and turn it into a ghost town.

Image Source: Wikipedia

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