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25 Feb 2024, Edition - 3148, Sunday

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Ooty founder’s bust in focus



Udhagamandalam: With this hill station observing the death anniversary of John
Sullivan,an English civil servant popularly referred to as the ‘founder of Ooty’, his bust on the Government Botanical Garden road here was in the limelight on Tuesday.

As Collector of Coimbatore between 1815 and 1830,he played a major role in discovering, developing and colonizing the Nilgiris.Tea
cultivation in this region owed its beginning to the visionary Englishman who was also the first to introduce English vegetables and various other crops. ”Stone House” the first European house in Ooty
was built by John Sullivan,who also initiated the construction of the Ooty Lake.

He was born on 15th June 1788 at London. He died on 16th January 1855 near London.

As a tribute to Sullivan’s significant contributions to Ooty, his bronze bust was put up,by the civic administration, on the Government Botanical Garden road here at a cost of Rs.20 lakhs It was unveiled on 21st May 2022 by the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Mr.M.K.Stalin.

While it was welcomed by all sections of the society, a demand since then had been that the description on the pedestal, which was now only in Tamil should also be in English. Though there was a write up on Sullivan in English nearby, it was on the blind side.

The contention was that,Ooty being an internationally renowned vacation destination, attracted tourists from various parts of the world. Further the footfall on the Government Botanical Garden road ran into about 30 lakhs per year and not all were familiar with Tamil.

The bust was garlanded today by the Tamil Nadu Tourism Minister Mr.K.Ramachandran and the Nilgiris Collector Ms.M.Aruna.

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