The land of Yaarlpanam was gifted to a renowned blind harp player by a former
Tamil king of Ilankai (the Tamil name for Sri Lanka).
Sri Lanka (meaning "resplendent land" in Sanskrit) was called Ceylon until 1972 when it became a republic, although the country became independent of British colonial rule on February 4th 1948. This country has also been known as Lankadweepa (dweepa meaning island, in the Ramayana) and "Lakdiva" (diva meaning island) in Singhalese. The Kingdom of Jaffna or Aryacakravarti (1215-1624) with its strategic location in the Palk Strait which connects the rest of the country to South India, existed at the time of arrival of foreign colonial influences. The first of these from the Portuguese (1505-1658) and later the Dutch (1658-1798). Prior influences to this region would have come from the Chera, Pandya and mainly Chola (235BC- 1279AD) dynasties.
The house initially belonged to Mr Sethurajah Chetty Shanmugathasan.
The house was purchased by Dr Vinayagamoorthy Pararajasingam (Dental Surgeon) and Mrs Jayarani Pararajasingham in May of 1957 and later the land behind the house in July of 1986. Exactly 28 years after the completion of the house, it was transferred to his 2nd daughter Subathra on her wedding day to Dr T.S. Balasubramaniam (MBBS, Ceylon) as their wedding gift/Dowry house.
The house was addressed at 371 C. Ponnambalam Road (named, after a previous mayor of Jaffna, Cathiravelu Ponnambalam), and later reverted to the previously known 47-49 Clock Tower Road (which it still stands as today), Jaffna, Sri Lanka.
The house was already the District Superintendant's Office for the Northern Province Postal service in 1957 and remained so for nearly 50 years until around 2005 (when the postal administration moved to a new purpose built building in Jaffna). The property remained mainly vacant thereafter until 2011 when we were able to renovate the house into a home away from home for our family and our guests.
Our family emigrated for work, further professional development and personal safety, and remained abroad during these last 30 years whilst the region has been affected by a turbulent civil war. Despite this we have always felt a strong connection to our culture and roots in Jaffna, where we were born and raised and where our ancestors for many generations before have resided. [Back]