‘Land’mark contribution: Theni siblings donate land to help expand Varusanadu bus stand

The fresh donation of farmland will help the panchayat build a road adjacent to the bus stand.
MS Paramasivam and G Palanivel donated two acres of land worth over Rs 2 crore.
MS Paramasivam and G Palanivel donated two acres of land worth over Rs 2 crore.(Photo |Express)

THENI: The verdant Varusanadu, on the banks of Vaigai River, no longer resembles a lost land from Tamil literature. The power of people and their commitment to the community has given the village panchayat in Theni a new aura.

When two farmers — G Palanivel (72) and his brother-in-law MS Paramasivam (45) — handed over a parcel of land (2.36 acres worth over Rs 2 crore) to the Varusanadu panchayat as a gift, there was jubilation. The land will help the panchayat expand its bus stand, which has been a long-standing demand. Most publicised promises of kindness usually end up being mighty facades, but here, the change in land ownership was disclosed only after documents were handed over to the panchayat president AVS Manimuthu.

For Palanivel, it is part of a mission. A few years ago, he donated 57 cents of his land to construct a police station. Palanivel and his friends had also gifted 15 acres of land for constructing an SC colony at Cumbum as well.

“By God’s grace, I have gathered enough wealth for my generation and I continue to earn. If the bus stand is extended, more buses travelling on various routes would ply to Varusanadu, propelling the town’s development,” a gleeful Palanivel said. “My wife and children have always encouraged me to donate land for a good cause.”

Hailing from an agricultural family, Palanivel studied up to PUC (Pre-University course) after which he continued his ancestral occupation, agriculture. The Cumbum native owns a large acreage of agricultural land in Varusanadu where he cultivates banana, mango, cashew and more.

The fresh donation of farmland will help the panchayat build a road adjacent to the bus stand. “Panchayat president Manimuthu requested my brother-in-law Paramasivam to contribute an acre of land for extending the bus stand. Near his plot, I own 1.36 acres of farmland which is currently a path to traverse to my fields. Now, the administration will be able to build an extension for the bus stand, only if they utilise both fields. Therefore, I pledged the land wholeheartedly,” he said.

His brother-in-law Paramasivam, a farmer in the area, is a native of Chinnamanur and a political party’s functionary. Since 1999, he has played an active role in the party, and has left no stone unturned to promote his community. “When Manimuthu approached and asked me to donate my one-acre field, I wholeheartedly donated, without receiving a single penny from the administration,” says Paramasivam, who is also a district secretary for the OBC wing of the BJP.

MS Paramasivam
MS Paramasivam

He said there are about 50 hamlets around Varusanadu, which mostly comprise farmers. The villagers face challenges in getting buses from the village due to the smaller bus stand, where presently, only 40 buses operate to Chennai, Madurai, Kumuli and Cumbum.

“If the bus stand is expanded, Varusanadu will reap the benefits,” Paramsivam said. “For this country, a number of freedom fighters have sacrificed their lives. My donation is the least I can do for my people,” he adds, sharing how he saw meaning in the benefits that the region will reap from his ‘mere material loss’.

Panchayat president AVS Manimuthu said the village did not have a primary health centre, police station or a market, when he assumed charge. “The existing poramboke lands were encroached by a few villagers, and were recovered following a legal battle,” he told TNIE. “I have sent a proposal for constructing a bus stand. We will start the construction work once the approval is in place,” he said.

The farmer duo has set an example of how a munificent donation could transcend time as the land becomes an investment for enhancing the daily lives of the community.

(Edited by Rohith Sony)

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