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(ARCHIVE) Vol. XIX No. 23, march 16-31, 2010

Historic Residences in Chennai - 38

(Sriram V.)

Srinath Baug
1, Nowroji Road, Kilpauk

The family of Gocoola Doss Jumna Doss was one of the earliest Gujarati families to settle in Madras city. The business house of the same name was founded by patriarch Gocoola Doss (d 1897) and carried on by the brothers Dwarka Doss Govardan Doss and Purushotama Doss Gocoola Doss (1882-1965). The firm dealt with silk cloth, embroidery, yarn and was also into money lending. It also held agencies for Binny’s, and both brothers were directors on its board. The family used its wealth to support several charities most of which were handled by Purushotama Doss Gocoola Doss and which have been expanded and continued by his descendants.

Srinath Baug was constructed and named after Srinathji, the deity at Srinathdwara, Rajasthan, for a Chettiar who had travelled to that shrine. He dealt with mirrors and mosaics and the house has plenty of these. The house, however, had to be sold about 80 years ago and it was a coincidence that the Gocoola Doss family, Gujaratis themselves, should have bought it. Today, it is the residence of Purushotama Doss Gocoola Doss’s sons. The sons have built individual residences in this vast compound but Srinath Baug is central to their lives, for it houses their family deity, Lord Krishna. The deity is worshipped every day.

The gardens have several statues in Indian and European styles and also a cowshed. The house, of the flat Madras roof variety, is of two floors, entered through a massive portico which features circular pillars. The house has numerous courtyards and chambers inside, and central to it is the shrine of Lord Krishna. (Courtesy: KalamKriya.)


In this issue

A landmark arising
What are we planning for the Buckingham Canal?
A waterway & an expressway in conflict
The Mylapore festival – that Sister Devamata witnessed 100 years ago
Historic Residences of Chennai - 38
Other stories

Our Regulars

Short 'N' Snappy
Our Readers Write
Quizzin' with Ram'nan
Dates for your Diary


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