What role do spouses of activists in Chennai suburb play?

Kalaiselvi Ramadoss

Chennai: It’s not easy being an activist. Apart from placing others’ requirements before one’s own, tirelessly working round-the-clock and the like, there is also the imperative need to tackle face-offs with the political order.

While activists slog it out this way, the role of their spouses always gets sidelined. News Today speaks to few such women in-and-around the area.

No matter if you are an old or new resident of Chrompet in the city suburb, you must have heard of Santhanam whose name is synonymous with activism.

Having dedicated almost five decades of his life for the society, he opines that without his wife’s support, he would not have come this far.

“I realised that he is a workaholic early in our marriage. Even when he was in service, he used to leave home as early as seven in the morning and return late. I eventually started becoming independent and carrying out the household chores all by myself without bothering him,” says Srimathy Santhanam.

“There has not been a single day when he took me to a movie or bought me a saree, even after retirement. He has always been involved in some form of service,” she adds.

It may be noted that her husband was assaulted thrice by hooligans. Yet, she stood with him thick and thin.

“My son, who lives abroad, has installed 13 CCTV devices around our house to ensure his father’s safety,” she concludes.

Srimathi Santhanam

Another activist in our locality is Ramadoss, a lawyer by profession.

“He has not even remembered our wedding day, let alone throwing surprises or celebrations. Only when I remind him, he takes me out,” mocks his wife Kalaiselvi.

“Despite being a person who wants to impact the society, he does not fail in his duties as a father and husband. He tries to spend as much time as he can, with us,” she says.

Speaking about what she admires in him, she states,”He has been burying orphaned corpses even before our wedding which baffles me a lot. At a time, when children and young couples are deserting their parents, it surprises me every time he does that.”

Bhavani Prabhakar