Many of you would have visited Wayanad as tourists, and would have surely visited the many spots like Banasura dam, chembra peak, soochi paara waterfalls
etc. But most wouldn’t have seen or heard about Chain Tree near the Ghat view point. Of even if you’ve heard, it would be some story of an evil spirit chained to that tree by a powerful magician. The reality is far from that.
The Thamarassery Ghat is situated on 3 hills. These hills were the main hindrance for the Britishers to reach Mysore and hence attack Tipu Sultan from the Malabar side. They tried their level best to find a route and build a road up the hills, but couldn’t succeed.
It was then that they noticed a young Adivasi named Karinthandan daily climbing the hills and back with his cows. They asked his help to find a route for the road and he readily agreed. The British engineers were amazed at the simple method that Karinthandan employed. He was scare the cows and chase them and cows would follow their instinct and run down the hills using the safest path. He marked the path and the Engineers realised that it was the best possible route among the hills.
But the Britishers did not want the outside world to know that an Adivasi boy could achieve what they couldn’t. They shot the boy in cold blood and the poor adivasis, being powerless, kept quiet about it.Soon people forgot about him. But later when frequent accidents used to happen on that route, people claimed that it was Karinthandan’s soul which caused it. Some magician put the enchanted chain on a tree claiming that he had banished the soul. Whatever it is, if not that chained tree, no one would have remembered Karinthandan now.
One just can’t believe that an innocent adivasi’s soul was responsible for all those accidents. Accidents still happen on the Thamarassery ghats.
As a Wayanadan, I would continue to attend the annual Karinthandan memorial ceremony held at the Chain Tree by the adivasis, and hope that he gets proper
recognition and due credit as the original creator of the Thamarassery ghats.