Anantha Koti Namaskarams to Sri Sri Sri Tridandi Chinna Jeeyar Swamiji

via S V Badri published on February 8, 2009
Covalam – the fisherman village

A seashore fishing village, 50 Kms from Chennai, Covalam is a
fisherman's village. A 1000 fishermen families live here. Ravaged by
the Tsunami, it has quickly limped back to life.

The Matsyavatar Mandir

While the Kannikaparameshwari Devi was worshipped by these fishermen
as their Ishta Devata, the Matsyavatar Perumal (Bhagawan Vishnu in
Matsya Avatar) remained their Kula Devata. The fishermen firmly
believe that Bhagawan Veda Vyas is their ancestor. And Bhagawan Vishnu
in His Matsya Avatar is their Kula Deva. The vigraha of this tin-
roofed Mandir, remained crude and the structure survived the Tsunami,
standing barely 500 meters from the ravaging sea. I had the honor of
taking Smt Ananda Kumari ji to this village a few years ago, before
the Tsunami. Smt Ananda Kumari ji is an ardent devotee of Sri Sri Sri
Tridandi Srimannarayana Chinna Jeeyar Swamiji and is actively involved
in all the welfare activities of the Swamiji. She organized a medical
camp courtesy: Sri Rama Chandra Medical College, Chennai and doctors
from every conceivable department were there to do a day long medical
and dental camp. She noticed the need for completion of the Matsya
Avatar Mandir.

With the Blessings of Sri Sri Sri Tridandi Jeeyar Swamiji, this Kula
Devatha Mandir of the fishermen was completed and consecrated in 2006.
Sri Tridandi Jeeyar Swamiji made two visits to this fishermen's
village, once in 2005 and the second time in 2006 after the
Kumbabishekam of this Mandir. Covalam Narayanan continues to tell me
how thrilled the entire community was at the sight of His Holiness
amidst them. And how they keep recollecting every minute of His
presence amidst them. He told me that how every member stayed away
from going to sea on the day He was there to Bless them. Swamiji has
made an indelible mark on these simple people.

The Dargah and the deliberate mischief

Adjoining these two Mandirs stands the Dargah. They deliberately tried
to bury their dead in the Covalam's Pasupathinath Mandir's tank. It is
with the help of these fisherfolk some years ago that, under the
guidance of Shri Rajesh of Besant Nagar (a great worker in this field
and I had the opportunity to learn by working closely with him on some
good projects), the fishermen laid siege to the tank through the night
and refused to budge. The, then Collector of the District, Shri
Rajaram instantly came early in the morning and within hours, work on
defining the boundaries of the tank, based on the village records took

Once, the boundaries were marked, he granted funds that became the
seed money to complete the magnificent boundary wall of the tank and
protect it from the encroachment of the dead.

Vidya Ganapati

To protect the tank from further encroachments and to provide the
students some divine guidance as they walk to their schools passing
through the tank, we decided to have a Ganapathi Vigraha consecrated
on the banks of this tank.

It was His Holiness Sri Sri Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamiji and Sri
Sri Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi Swamiji of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam who
blessed a Vinayaka Vigraha and gave it to me to consecrate at the
selected place.

Smt Ananda Kumari accompanied me as I did the ritual of consecrating
the Ganapathi. Today, every child passing through the place would make
a Pradakshina and proceed onwards to the school.

The inmates of the Dargah started resorting to defecating on the
premises of the Matsyavatar Mandir. For, it had no compound wall and a
gate to secure it from the miscreants.

It is with the blessings of Sri Sri Sri Tridandi Chinna Jeeyar Swamiji
that His Holiness's team came forward to take up this enormous task.

Work on constructing the compound wall has commenced. And within a
fortnight the Mandir will be rendered secure from the miscreants.
Recently, under the direction of His Holiness Smt Ananda Kumari took
two Homeopaths, who held a day long camp in the village.

I join the 1000 fishermen family members to offer our Anantha Koti
Namaskarams and Sashtanga Pranamams to Sri Tridandi Srimannarayana
Chinna Jeeyar Swamiji.

S V Badri

Camp: Chennai

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