The Haunting Tale Of The Deserted Ghost Town Of Dhanushkodi

by Kamiya Jani
The Haunting Tale Of The Deserted Ghost Town Of Dhanushkodi

Are you inclined towards spine-chilling ghost stories, especially the ones that are believed to be real?  Then you must have heard about the popular haunted places in India like Rajasthan’s Bhangar FortKolkata’s South Park Street Cemetery or Delhi’s Bhuli Bhatiyari. But did you know about the abandoned town of Dhanushkodi in the south-eastern end of Tamil Nadu’s Pamban island? The place Dhanushkodi is an irony in itself. It’s hard to believe that the peace and tranquility that surrounds this tiny place is only an epilogue to the fury of a devastating cyclone. Ripped apart in 1964, Dhanushkodi now stands in ruins with just a few fishermen who refuse to leave. The island miraculously seems to take care of them.

Trip To The Haunted Down Dhanushkodi

My trip to Dhanushkodi was an eventful one. First, I experienced Pamban Bridge (said to be the among the world’s most dangerous sea-bridges) in all its glory. I was still on that high when I stepped into Dhanushkodi. Broken churches and houses were lying in rubble. The town was once a flourishing trade centre with goods being transported from India to Sri Lanka. There were hotels, textiles and dharamshalas. There was a railway station, a hospital, police and tradesmen. However, on the night of December 22-23 of 1964, all of this and more was lost. Approximately 2,000 people died that night.

Pamban Bridge

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Locals Say That The Village Is Inhibited By The Souls Of People Killed In Cyclone

I asked my guide why the city was never rebuilt. He said that there’s a lot of unrest here due to the immense destruction in the village. No one can live here now because it is haunted by the souls of those killed in the cyclone. In fact, the government forbids anyone from entering Dhanushkodi after dark. I couldn’t help but agree. There is indeed a feeling of eeriness that surrounds Dhanushkodi although the beautiful view of the Bay of Bengal and the Indian Ocean enchants you. Dhanushkodi has more than grief in its history. It is said that Lord Rama pointed to this town with the tip of his bow. Lord Hanuman built a bridge to Sri Lanka from here. It seems quite believable given that Sri Lanka is a mere 31 kms from


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I walked on to the very edge and watched as the Bay gently convered with the ocean. I wondered how such beauty could cause so much damage. Dhanushkodi is a tribute to beauty and destruction. On that note, here’s one of the most haunted places in Pune: