- AT CALICUT AGAIN
After entrusting responsibilities to newly elected Circle Secretary, Com. P.V.Chandrasekharan, returned to Calicut in first week of June 1981. Two weeks between Circle Conference and shifting to Calicut was utilsed to take farewel of many friends and comrades at Trivandrum, as also introducing new Circle Secretary to GM and other officers of Department and getting transfer order got issued to Calicut.
When joining at Trivandrum after election as Circle Secretary in 1978, had hesitation, how to manage union work in a place, where OPG group was strong and equations were different. But the wholehearted support extended by union leaders and complete faith by workers made my life and work at Trivandrum fully fruitful.
Wife and children very happy at my transfer back. Children were growing. The line room apartment was completely insufficient. We had thought about it earlier and had puchased a plot at Kottuli, near Mavoor Road to construct a house. It was a fertile compound with a good number of coconut and other trees. But no approach road, only a narrow path on which even auto riksha could not go. Considering shift duties to both of us, including night duties, comparatively long distance from exchange etc. house was not constructed.
A 6 cents plot was purchased at Valiyathodi near Gandhi Road from the family members of M/s C.C.Brothers, well known bus owners. Pankajam took house building advance from Department. It was only Rs.30,600 which was completely insufficient. It was paid in instalments also.
Sold the plot at Kottuli and took loans from friends and completed by 1987, a long period of ten years after starting construction. In addition to financial difficulties, there was problem in getting cement etc. Sanction from District Collector was necessary for getting cement. It was short of requirement. My absence at Calicut was another reason.
Of course, compulsion was there to expedite completion. Owner of the line rooms where we stayed on rent, Goray family, had decided to sell these, to meet some urgent requirements. They asked us whether we can purchase. The price was about Rs.50,000 which none of us in a position to pay. It was sold to Shreekandeswara Temple Managent for stay of temple priests. We were allowed to stay till alternate arrangements.
The housewarming was on 8th February 1987. Comrades, friends, relatives – all were there. As was usual at that time, they brought presents, including furniture. The present system of ‘ Presents in Presence only’, ‘ Avoid presents’ etc not started. Every body gave presents and everybody accepted.
When Com.Keluettan, Dist. Secretary, CPI(M) came, he said ‘gate should be larger to enable cars to enter’. I did not take it seriously then. But after years, necessity arose and gate was enlarged.
Advocate P.K.Kunhirama Poduval who came along with his juniors gave a cover as present. Later when I opened the cover, found a big amount. He might have thought about my financial difficulties due to being on loss of pay for about three years after I did not join Kavaratti on punishment transfer. I remembered that he argued all 1968 cases in Calicut and Kalpetta free.
With shifting to our own house, problem of shortage of space was settled. There were convenient buses from beach passing through the front side road of telephone exchange. Providence High School for Mini and Christian College High School for Shaji nearby, walking distance. We can also go to exchange by walk.
At last dream of one’s own home materialised. All of us were happy with the new house. Good neighbours. ( TO BE CONTINUED)