Swamy Saranam !
Far beyond a religious Institution, an Ayyappa Temple symbolises many things for a Malayalee living outside Kerala. It often acts as a yardstick to the relevance of a Malayalee Community in the social life of a North Indian Metro. Unfortunately, Chandigarh, the twin capital of Pun jab and Haryana was an exception when Ayyappa devotees in the City had to content with a Prayer Shed and occasional Bhajans held there till late 1980s. A remarkable turnaround occured to this situation, when I, with the patronage and ample help from the like minded devotees among Air Force and Civilian Communities could effectively intervene and initiate the construction of a Temple. A venture of such magnitude, as is the wont, had to face with umpteen number of hurdles at the outset besides the threat of terrorism and secessionism looming large over the State of Punjab.
We often had to act unmindful of personal safety and security. It would be apt to recollect here a gruesome act of terrorism of that period, gunning down in the broad daylight 27 employees of my erstwhile Organisation i.e. Punjab Tractors Ltd.
Bravehearts joined together with an unwavering devotion and single minded focus. Money and other resources flowed in unhindered; undeterred spirit of devotees created a synergy powerful enough to build a magnificent and fully functional Kerala model Temple both in spirituality and rituals in the City. Much to the fun and excitement of devotees, celebrities like His Highness Kanchi Shankaracharya, Padmasree KJ Yesudas etc paid visit to the Temple on and off.
Now it stands testimony to the stupendous human effort, which is bound to inspire the countless generations to come.
PV SUDHAKARAN CHANDIGARH
CHAIRMAN 12th November 2014