Thiruvananthapuram: A small gate between Rose House and Xanadu, the official residences of Kerala Ministers at Vazhuthacaud, still stands as a symbol of love between K R Gouri Amma and T V Thomas.
In 1957, Xanadu was the venue where Thomas and Gouri Amma, who were members of the Communist ministry, tied the knot. In 1967, T V Thomas as the CPI Minister and Gouri Amma as the CPM Minister became part of the EMS cabinet. T V Thomas stayed at Rose House and K R Gouri Amma at Xanadu. Their marital life had witnessed minor points of friction during these 10 years.
They chose different residences to avoid problems when members from two separate parties turned up to meet the Ministers. But they still stayed and ate together.
In the mornings, the two Ministers left in two different cars. But Gouri Amma and Thomas usually returned in the same car to have lunch in the afternoons.
As Gouri Amma found it a hassle to take the roundabout route to reach Rose House, a small private gate was constructed on the wall separating the two residences. And through this, Gouri walked in several times of the day to meet with her husband.
But once when their squabble escalated, Gouri walked out through this same gate. Then for a long time, this gate remained shut.
Finally, during the P K Vasudevan Nair's Ministry in 1979, this gate was opened again.
Now, as the new cabinet is set to be sworn in Kerala, the outgoing Ministers who stayed in the official residences would be vacating. And as K R Gouri Amma breathed her last at a private hospital about 5km away from here on Tuesday, a pall of gloom descended over both the residences.
Kadannappally Ramachandran is at the Rose House, while M M Mani at Xanadu.