Registered with the Registrar of Newspapers for India under R.N.I 53640/91

Vol. XXX No. 22, March 16-31, 2021

Heritage Watch

A Corporation without a Council

Our OLD features Ripon Buildings, photographed in 1913, the year it was inaugurated. Our NEW is of its Council chamber, all empty, photographed by Vinay Aravind in 2013. It is ironic that in the British days we had an elected civic body, while now we don’t have one.



Our lead in the adjoining column laments the fact that the city has not had an elected Corporation Council in a long while. What is a matter of greater wonder however is that the citizenry appears to care two hoots about this withholding of a democratic right. And yet, to much of Chennai, Ripon Buildings is a treasured and cherished landmark – the home of its administration. It is a different matter that the powers of the high-sounding Greater Chennai Corporation have been steadily whittled down with the formation of other bodies such as the Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority, the Chennai Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board, the Slum Clearance Board and a whole host of what are today known as Special Purpose Vehicles.

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