Much criticised Kottayam skywalk becomes stylish photoshoot backdrop

Teena S Mathews
Teena S Mathews was selected to be the model by photographer Anto Varghese for the shoot.

The stalled construction of a skywalk at the Seematti Junction of Kottayam Town has been the subject of trolls for forever now. The sorry state of the site is more than an inconvenience for the people of Kottayam, given the fact that the Seematti Round, which used to help steer the traffic of the town, was razed to the ground to make way for the skywalk. But the Christmas spirit seems to have brought deliverance to the mercilessly trolled site in the form of a dazzling photoshoot.

Photographer Anto Varghese conceived the idea. He then went into a meticulous planning mode, thought up the light scheme and approached Teena S. Mathews to be the model for the shoot.

Teena draped a red saree to be in tune with the Christmas times. The dazzling blue lights lit up the perpetually-in-work scaffoldings of the skywalk-in-making. But the place they chose to shoot was a busy junction and there was no respite from traffic even at night.

After hours of wait, the opportune moment came at 2 a.m. when the traffic eased a bit. The lighting team used a blue gel on the flashlights as the ambient light was very low.

The Seematti traffic round was constructed in Kottayam when there was not much traffic planning in the country. But the Seematti round helped ease traffic congestion in the town then. Four years ago, the round-about was demolished and work on the skywalk started. Not much progress could be made after that. Now, troll-makers say, the ‘skeletons’ of the skywalk have come in for some use: a photoshoot.

Anto, a press photographer earlier, had quit his job and started doing shoots independently. But COVID came in as the villain of the script and he was not getting adequate work. His urge to do something different led him to the skywalk photoshoot.

skywalk kottayam
File picture of the skywalk under construction in Kottayam. Photo: Manorama

Anto’s grandfather V.A. Varkey was a well-known artist in Kottayam. He specialised in portraits. The portrait of Geevargese Mar Gregorios at the Pambadi Dayara is among the notable works of artist Varkey.

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