Om Adi Muruga! Om Adi Muruga!! One can hear these loud cries while approaching Nallamudi Poonjolai, a fabulous view point tucked within the Valparai hills and inside the Anaimalai Tiger Reserve.
These cries or rather loud chants are made by a ‘Velu’, an elderly farmer who says he has seen the Lord Muruga himself at this very view point. From that day, Velu takes care of this place as if it were his temple. And the best part is that Velu is quite an educated person who is well conversant in English. So, if you need details about his spiritual experience, all you have to do is find him.
The funny part is that…even though Nallamudi Poonjolai is a great view point, it became famous only after Velu saw God here. It is Velu’s tryst with destiny that spread like wildfire all over the town of Valparai and the villages surrounding it.
Such is the magic that Velu is allowed unrestrictive access to this area even though others are not allowed as this view point happens to right in the middle of the forest area. This is a rule created by the forest department to prevent human-wildlife altercations. But, Velu is above this rule.
I was talking to a forest guard here and he was telling me that Velu apparently lives here. The wild animals do him no harm and he lives off the produce of the forest. He also told me that Velu visits the interiors of the forest every day and shouts his chants. May be, there might be a temple coming up here real soon.
You should definitely visit this place to be in the place where god was seen! Apart from that, for us normal people, this place is a stunner set amidst a spectacular setting.
Located at about 13 kms from the town of Valparai, the drive to the Nallamudi Poonjolai view point is itself special as you weave and turn from one tea estate into another. The green waves of tea make for a refreshing sight.
And once you reach the check point, a short uphill walk (say a relaxed 10 minute walk) through another tea estate brings you in full view of Nallamudi Poonjolai. The wide view with forests on one side and tea estates on the other are a nature lover’s delight.
The monsoons are ideally the best time to visit this place when it is completely green and umpteen waterfalls intersect the greenery. The best views here are generally seen in the early hours of the morning when there is no mist or cloud cover.
Whether you decide to visit this place for its spirituality or for its natural beauty, I am sure you will not return disappointed. Your experiences with Velu, or lest alone stories about him or the splendid green surroundings or a combination of the above will ensure that you find inner peace albeit only for a moment. Om Adi Muruga!!