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Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Kodanad: Jayalalithaa’s Home in the Nilgiri Mountains

Kodanad is one of the most scenic spots in the Nilgiris with scintillating 220 degree views, tall and dense pine forests, beautifully green tea estates and a pleasant nip in the air. It is situated about 20 kilometres from Kotagiri, the oldest hill station in the Nilgiri Mountains of Tamil Nadu.


What is also special about Kodanad is that it is the home of AIADMK chief and ex-chief minister of Tamil Nadu, Ms. Jayalalithaa.


Jayalalithaa owns close to 1.600 acres of pristine land here. In fact, most of the tea estates and forest area fall under her property. A palatial bungalow situated on one corner is Jayalalithaa’s summer home and relaxing centre. Locals say that her property is so huge that it has nine different gates to enter from, though only extremely important people are allowed even with prior appointments.


This is where Ms. Jayalalitha comes to relax and get stress-free. In fact, when I was a couple of weeks back, I saw a lot of policemen patrol the area and on asking them, I found out that amma (Ms. Jayalalitha) was indeed present there.


My driver and local guide told me that Ms. Jayalalitha comes here to undergo Ayurvedic and medical treatments. They also mentioned that the tea grown in the Kodanad estates are of superior quality and most of it is exported to the international market.


Even if someone parks their car here just to do some sightseeing, the security guards come rushing in. That is how tight the security cover is.


But, even though the security is very tight here, one should definitely visit Kodanad for the splendid views it offers and for a walk through the misty tea estates.

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