Cricketer Natarajan gets hero’s welcome at Salem village

Chennai: Left arm fast bowler Thangarasu Natarajan, who was part of the triumphant Indian team that recorded a historic 2-1 win over Australia, was accorded a hero’s reception in Salem district, even as health department officials asked him to get quarantined since he returned from abroad.

Soon after he arrived at his native hither to nondescript Chinnappampatti village in his native Salem district of Tamilnadu, Natarajan, who became the first Indian to make his debut in all the three formats in the same series was accorded a rousing reception by the villagers.

It was celebration time at Chinnappampatti, which has now garnered international attention, thanks to Natarajan’s exploits in the series Down Under.

The entire village wore a festive look in view of the arrival of Natarajan, who was seen wearing face masks and hand gloves.

He was greeted by tens and hundreds of people and was garlanded by the officials.
He was escorted to his residence in a procession in a tastefully decorated horse-mounted chariot.

Even people from neighbouring districts thronged the village to greet him. Locals welcomed him with folk dances, beating of drums and bursting of crackers and presented him with bouquets.

Natarajan responded to the people’s reception and greetings by showing thumbs up sign and with folded hands.

Scores of people took photographs in their mobile phones. Though the villagers have erected make shift dias all along the route till his residence to receive greetings from the people, the health officials have asked them to remove it citing the pandemic.

Health and district officials also visited his house and asked him to undergo the mandatory 14 day home quarantine as he came from abroad.

The cricketer was also asked not to meet any people during the quarantine period, though he underwent corona tests in Australia before leaving for India.


NT Bureau