The Grand Old city of Chennai that was Madras – until officially renamed less than three decades ago – turns 384 today. It was on this ‘day’ of 22nd August in 1639 that Sir Francis Day as one of two signatories on behalf of the British East India Company, created Madras as a city with land acquired as Fort St George from a fishing village of the Naicker brothers.

In it’s own quiet, ubiquitous manner, the city has grown exponentially beyond recognition to become a unique manufacturing hub for almost every form of surface transport from bicycles to cars, trucks, buses, railway coaches and even armoured tanks! The world famous Royal Enfield motorbikes may be a pride of any manufacturing location but what about Madras also being the second oldest fully functional city corporation after London City among a slew of other ‘firsts’ and premium positions?

Having been settled here for more than 3 decades after growing up in my all-time favourite city of Mumbai – and been all over, including Pune and Amdavad as my other shorter ‘homestays’ – I admit my love for Chennai is more emotional than rational! In fact, if I did think of writing a book on Chennai, the title will probably be “Heat, Dust and Mosquitoes” What a list of stupendous growth and developments, albeit, to be proud of! Like it or loathe it, one cannot leave it or live without it! Chennai’s culture is unique and it’s a peaceful city of quirky contradictions.

I found this sincere but passionate tribute by a friendly fellow citizen of Chennai, M J Prasad quite insightful and informative. Hope you all feel proud about the same things we never think about in daily life.

As Professionals in Business and Management, let’s celebrate one of the oldest remaining legacies of British India by pledging to do our bit to make it a cleaner, more civic-conscious city. Let us all put a bit of our time and effort and money to making it like Amdavad for it’s waterways and like New Delhi for it’s roads, Bengaluru for it’s greenery and whatever it takes for a better, brighter, decongested Chennai.

A little bit of our CSR spend every year should be dedicated to Namma Singara Chennai – Tamil for ‘Our Beautiful Chennai!

Meanwhile, feel the PRIDE in the Past, to PLAN for a better future that our city deserves.

2320cookie-check‘MADRAS DAY’ GREETINGS!