Friday, Aug 12, 2022
×
Outlook.com
×

24 Hours In Life Of Esther Shanthi | Taming Goons And Living In Chambers Of Death

Esther Shanthi leads the extra-ordinary life of managing a crematorium in Chennai. Working 12 hours a day for a salary of Rs 12,000 a month, she has been an enigma of sorts

24 Hours In Life Of Esther Shanthi | Taming Goons And Living In Chambers Of Death Photograph by G.C. Shekhar

Drums announce the arrival of the first corpse at the cremation and burial ground in Otteri, Chennai. As the procession moves ­towards the cremation hall in the 14-acre complex, a lady on a two-wheeler arrives at the large smoke-stained hall that houses the ­cremation chamber. She checks if the furnace has ­attained its optimum temperature The son of the ­deceased lights a camphor on his father’s chest before the body is thrust into the fire.

Thus begins another working day for Esther Shanthi, the supervisor of Chennai’s second-largest burial and cremation ground in a locality notorious for high crime rates. For the past five years, the 40-year-old mother of three has been skilfully managing the facility.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement