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From Chandyism to Solar Scam: World’s First Fully Solar-Powered Airport Shines Bright


Oommen Chandy, known for his dedication to public service, held a special place in the hearts of the people in his home constituency of Puthupally. An incident from his time as the chief minister exemplified his humility and consideration for others. Even when the police special branch called to inquire about his itinerary, he responded with exact details, impressing the officer with his modesty. Chandy’s soft-spoken speeches and his willingness to help others, regardless of their politics, endeared him to the people, giving rise to what could be called “Chandyism.”

The Solar Scam and the World’s First Fully Solar-Powered Airport

During a period of controversy surrounding the solar scam, Oommen Chandy fearlessly championed the solar project. Despite the political turmoil, he supported the idea of making Cochin International Airport the world’s first fully solar-powered airport. The former additional chief secretary, V J Kurien, recalled their meeting where Chandy swiftly approved the project, emphasizing his courage and vision.

Puthupally’s Beloved ‘Kunjoonju’

Oommen Chandy’s accessibility and willingness to address the concerns of the people made him Puthupally’s beloved leader. Letters addressed simply to “Oommen Chandy, Puthupally” reached him without fail, showcasing the trust and closeness between him and the community. He diligently read each letter and extended his help whenever possible. One incident involved a former DCC employee’s daughter requesting financial assistance for her wedding, which Chandy promptly provided through a representative.

Taking the Right Decisions at the Right Time

Former DGP A Hemachandran highlighted Chandy’s ability to make timely decisions when faced with challenging situations. When the treasure was discovered in the underground chamber of the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple, debates and disputes ensued. Amidst the confusion, Chandy’s decision to declare the treasure as the property of the temple helped resolve the matter.

Simple Habits and Unwavering Dedication

Oommen Chandy’s modest lifestyle and unwavering dedication to his work set him apart. He traveled without a wallet, relying on coupons for transportation and carrying just enough money for a cup of tea. His mornings began with newspapers and tea, which he considered essential. During a train journey, he shared a newspaper with another passenger, showcasing his down-to-earth nature. Despite having only one shirt, Chandy used multiple cars, frequently shifting between them. His colleagues even recalled him signing a file while in the shower, highlighting his commitment to his responsibilities.

Oommen Chandy’s presence in Puthupally was characterized by his meticulous planning, noted in a pocket diary, and his unwavering commitment to visiting the people. He made it a point to congratulate newlyweds, pose for a photograph, and quickly return to his duties, often skipping meals. In times of grief, people would ask if the relatives and Oommen Chandy had been informed, emphasizing his significance in the lives of the community.



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