MUZIRIS HERITAGE PROJECT INAUGURATION
Some have mentioned in the comments on my earlier posting on the inauguration of the Muziris Heritage Project that my name was not mentioned in any of the newspapers. I think, the planners and the designers do not have any role in the inauguration of the project, it is the time for the politicians and the bureaucrats. Our role is to see that the project is done according to the original vision, standards and specifications. In the case of the Tarangambadi housing project for the tsunami affected fishermen, which I have designed, a study was done by Gertrud Tauber, the German Researcher. Quoting from her report as told by one of the fisherman owner of one of the 1200 houses, "We were lucky that this architect worked on our project. Many things are well done. However there are things that could have been done better. For example, the orientation of the bathroom and the toilet. They should not face the neighbour's house. We had to build compound walls. And there is the quality of construction which is, in some cases, poor; better of course that in many other villages, however, not always satisfying. Who I would like to build my house with? I would like to call this architect again, if he would like to plan a single small house. I would tell him about the toilet and the quality. But I think he goes for big projects in cities only. So I would call the mason. " I have never seen this fishermen in my life, but he still remembers the architect. As far as Muziris Project is considered, I am happy as long as the visitors to the place are happy. Cristina Iamandi, from UNESCO Paris who came to assess the Muziris Project, wrote a personal mail to me. Quoting from the same, "I want to congratulate you for the high quality of the documents you have sent me, related to your exemplary work in Muziris and environs. I've shown them also to some people in UNESCO headquarters in Paris and everybody has been very impressed about the concept and its implementation, following indeed the state-of-the-art int'l conservation standards and guidelines. I hope the project will be successfully completed and I trust that the cultural assets revealed, preserved and enhanced or created through this project will foster pride and contribute significantly to the improvement of inhabitants' life and attract more visitors (I will be one of them!)." If the visitors to the Muziris Heritage Project are happy about the visit, that is the best joy and happiness and reward that a designer can get.