Sunday, September 25, 2016

Ross Island

The first thing that greets you as soon as you land on Ross Island are the deer. They are friendly and gather around you, (mainly looking for food)  



There were instances where the deer tried to escape from the island, maybe due to lack of food or drinking water. 
The island gets its name from Daniel Ross, a marine surveyor. It became the natural choice for the settlers (British) due to its commanding geographical location. Settlers went about recreating a home far away from home with vigour, so much so that the island soon earned the name of “Paris of the East” Soon churches, homes for the  British and Indian officers, store houses, shops, printing press, hospital, post office, tennis court, mineral water plant, swimming pool, bakery, library and general stores came up. An entire bazaar and three separate clubs were constructed. About 500 personnel including officers, troops, Indian merchants and families lived at Ross Island.  


The bakery still stands, but is in ruins. 



And so are some of the living quarters 




Since 1979 the Indian Navy has set up a small permanent post here. No one is allowed to settle on the island.  What you get to see are a few air raid bunkers like this one, built by the Japanese during their reign at the fag end of WW-II   


  There are very few who has been to Ross Island and not met Anuradha Rao. 




Its been a life time that she was on the island and has a good rapport with the animals and the birds. The deer, squirrel, and birds  respond to her call. 


Once while feeding the deer I noticed a squabble between two deer. She immediately called out to them by their name and told them to stop the fight. That is when I realized that she had names for each one of them.
When the Japanese invaded, her grandfather, who was involved in the Indian freedom struggle at that time, was a prisoner of the British on the island. He was executed by the Japanese on the suspicion of being a “British spy” 
The bread that she feeds them is without yeast. She says that Yeast is not good for the deer and can even kill them.

The island which was 200 acres in size, lost about 130 acres due to the earthquake in 1941. The 2004 tsunami also took its toll of the island but on a lesser scale as the main impact was on Nicobar and not Andaman.


Like Ms Anuradha Rao said, its only when you visit such places and understand their history that you can comprehend the scale of the sacrifice made by people of another generation, so that we can live in freedom”

37 comments:

Anonymous said...

That bakery looks almost in tact except for the roof.

DUTA said...

How very interesting! I first learnt about the area of Andaman, when the Malaysian plane MH370 dissappeared, and they were looking for it there.
I'm glad Ross island is not totally abandoned (I hate abandoned places) as the Indian navy has a base there.

Lowell said...

I've heard of Ross Island but had no idea what it was all about. Most interesting post.

TexWisGirl said...

wow! i like the woman who knows the animals so well. :)

Linda said...

Such a beautiful and fascinating place, and since I love animals and nature, I would feel right at home there! Lovely photos. :)

Bill said...

Amazing, indeed. Love the incredible root system on that tree!

Michelle said...

These deer are very beautiful!

Jim and Sandie said...

I love those little deer. History is so important but I didn't learn that lesson til much later in life.

Unknown said...

Interesting blog.. what a beautiful place

Liz A. said...

Fascinating and sad story.

Andrew said...

It is nice see such a diverse range of animals all tolerating each other. The buildings could be restored but I rather like them as they are.

Loraine Fernandes said...

Interesting blog.. what a beautiful place

rainfield61 said...

Interesting place with so many coconut trees.

Alka Gurha said...

Andaman is on my bucket list. And this lady seems to be in love with the place and the animals.

Purba said...

Sounds like a must visit.

Andamans has been on my bucket list for SO long!

Breathtaking said...

Hello1:) So much history here, with the evidence of past lives in those old buildings. Anuradha Rao, seems like an extraordinary person, the way that she connects with the animals. I would surely enjoy a guided tour of the island with her, and it would be lovely to see all the wildlife.

padmaja said...

This is very informative and beautiful. I wish I could learn to talk to animals like Anuradha, there is a lot more to God's creations than we are aware of. Thank you for sharing.

SlimExpectations said...

I think my kids would love to visit the place! Thanks for sharing!

Seraphinas Phantasie said...

Wonderful impressions.
Best, Synnöve

Ankita said...

I have a special liking for deers and esp their doe eyes gazelles, they are so innocent and beautiful!

klive86 said...

Been to Andaman..its breathtaking place

Bijoux said...

I like to visit islands but am not fond of deer. We have a deer problem here where they eat everything in our yard.

Maniparna Sengupta Majumder said...

A great write-up. I've heard about Ross island, but this is the first time I read such details about the place. The quote of Ms Rao is commendable indeed...we seldom understand the extent of the sacrifice made by those freedom-fighters.

Anonymous said...

A good read , you are taking us to many places - Pradeep Prabhune.

Leena Walawalkar said...

I had absolutely no idea about this place..thanks for adding to my GK :)

Sujatha Sathya said...

The bread without yeast....the world war connection.....littl places with untold stories ..always interesting to read

Barbara Fisher said...

I knew nothing at all about Ross Island but having read your post I would love to visit. It must be wonderful to be greeted by so many deer. Ms Rao sounds like an interesting and amazing woman. Thank you for this informative post.

The Wardrobe Stylist said...

I've never heard of this place. The tree is amazing, incredible how it grew like that.

http://the-wardrobe-stylist.com/2016/09/27/diy-thanksgiving-ideas/

Anonymous said...

Interesting blog on Ross Island and Anuradha who knows the animals so well, her final words at the end are so right, we forget the sacrifices of our forefathers, and so we squander away the freedom they gave their lives for. Sad. - Theresa Mathews.

A Cuban In London said...

What beautiful pictures! :-) Thanks.

Greetings from London.

LCKK said...

Beautiful!

Kim@stuffcould.... said...

Such pretty deer! Yes the bakery is built so pretty also, too bad it can't be restored.

Vaisakhi said...

Of many things in Andaman, Ross Island fascinates me the most because of the ruins and the history! And this post just made me feel good about my fascination. :D

Bikram said...

seems to be a lovely place.. I missed my chance to visit the andaman and nicobar when my uncle was posted there..

I regret it now

Bikram's

MJ said...

Nice blog. Good read about Ross island

Lowcarb team member said...

Lovely to see the deer in your first photo.

All the best Jan

Bethany Carson said...


Wow! It is amazing that the deer or so tame. What an interesting place. Ms Anuradha Rao sounds like a fascinating lady.