The song ‘Chennai Porombokku Paadal’ is a tribute to Chennai’s dying rivers, lakes, creeks and seashore, all of which are classified as “Porombokku” or shared-use commons. As long as they are healthy and free from encroachment, the city will be safe from natural shocks like heat waves, water scarcity, storms and floods.
Unfortunately, Porombokku has degraded to become a term of abuse to refer to worthless people and places. Government and planners have handed and continue to hand over wetlands and beach spaces to private developers and industry.
Background of the song’s idea
The music video is a critique of our inept and unaccountable regulatory agencies. Through their actions and lapses, agencies like the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board, State Coastal Zone Management Authority and Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority have allowed our wetlands to be killed.
The degraded state of Cooum, Adyar and Ennore Creek are merely the symptoms of the disease. It is impossible to clean up the rivers without cleaning up the regulatory agencies.
The song features Perumal Murugan, T.M. Krishna, Rathindran Prasad (of Kodaikanal Won’t fame), Nityanand Jayaraman & Tamil song-writer/singer Kaber Vasuki. It will be launched on 14 January, 2017. 4 p.m. at SPACES, 1 Elliots Beach Road, Besant Nagar.