Anything that withstand the test of time can be referred to as a classic. And today's classic story revolves around 1828 somewhere in the city of Madurai.
A British Collector, Rous Peter was then in-charge of the area and the Meenakshi Amman temple was located somewhere between his house and his office. He used to travel everyday on his horse and as soon as he would come into the temple zone, he would come down from his horse, take off his hat and walk barefoot spite. It was perhaps his own way of showing devotion and paying reverence to the Goddess. He even earned the title of 'Peter Pandian', in the words of Ambai Manivannan, lecturer at the Thiagarajar College, for he treated people of different faiths equally.
Now one dark night, when the whole city was asleep, and it was raining heavily, Peter was also sleeping but he was awaken by the sound of anklets and heard a little girl calling him. The 3-year-old girl literally dragged Peter out of his house. The little young girl was adorned in precious and lustrous ornaments throughout but her feet were bare. On coming out of home, Peter was spellbound to find the whole city water clogged. He helplessly saw his house getting destructed and to add on it, he could no longer trace the little girl, who saved him.
He was blessed and realised how the Goddess Meenakshi had saved him from this fatal accident. Later on, he contributed a set of golden stirrups studded with diamonds and red stones to the Meenakshi temple as a homage and the pair still today is said to be kept safe guardedly in the temple.
By: Subrata Dey