THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In the Limca Book of World Records and Asian Book of Records as the longest steel-made snake boat, you have seen Aries Guinness Chundan in a bevy of films, ads and music videos. Now, the architecture wonder is open for tourists and is being displayed at Aries Vismayas Max as part of Travancore Treasures, a tourism project connecting prominent film destinations in the city. “We built the boat braving a lot of hurdles including lack of local infrastructure facilities, raw material and trained manpower. But determination, dedication and unity of our team led by Thachan Babu helped to launch the boat with unique features in record time,” says Sohan Roy, filmmaker and chairman of Aries Group.
143.25 feet long Aries Guinness Chundan, built at a cost of Rs 15 lakh in 2006, has the record for carrying 141 rowers and being the longest, fastest, safest and cheapest ever snake boat made of steel, say the makers. The boat was installed at Vismaya in connection with Project Indywood, an initiator which aims at elevating Indian Film Industry to global standards.
According to Roy, the boat is a tribute to people of Punnamada, where the famous Nehru Trophy Boat race is conducted. “At that time Punnamada was lacking a snake boat as most of the chundans were from other parts of Alappuzha. As people from Punnamada couldn’t afford the huge expense of constructing a snake boat and maintaining it properly, we decided to build an exclusive snake boat for the people of Punnamada without costing anything on its maintenance for more than a decade,” he says. “Currently we are trying to build four same size steel snake boats to conduct weekly and annual league races for the promotion of Indian tourism,” he adds.