Thiruvananthapuram: Gone are the days when Vastu Shastra was used only by Hindus while
constructing their homes, says 60-year-old K. Muraleedharan Nair,
who is much sought after here for his knowledge of the ancient
Indian building principles.
The fad has caught on among Kerala's Christians and Muslims as
"Today Vastu has no religious barriers. I have a steady stream of
people calling on me, seeking professional advice right from when
to buy a plot," said Nair, a retired government employee based
Vastu is a system of architectural designs based on directions. It
is all about creating congenial settings for a place to live or
It takes advantage of the benefits bestowed by the five elements
of nature, called "panchabhootas", thereby claiming to pave the
way for enhanced health, wealth, prosperity and happiness.
Widespread coverage in the media has made more people aware of it,
"This has become popular as TV channels conduct regular shows on
Vastu and even newspapers have a weekly column by Vastu experts,"
Nair, who also runs short-term Vastu courses recognized by the
Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), told IANS.
C.J. Varghese, an architect by profession, said even the builders
of multi-storey apartments are very particular about Vastu.
"We have a few Vastu experts who give us professional advice
because as far as flats are concerned there are certain
limitations. But given those limitations, all aspects of Vastu are
adhered to," said Varghese.
Agreed K.I. Mujib, a Muslim and a leading builder in the state
capital who specialises in villas. "I have built over 100 villas
and each home is Vastu-compliant. All clients ask for it,
irrespective of their religion," he said.
Kerala has seen a building boom, with remittances by Malayalis
from the Gulf making the real estate sector flourish.
P.N. Suresh, executive director of the state-run Vasthuvidya
Gurukulam, said the number of enquiries the institution receives
for homes to be built under Vastu has gone up manifold.
"If one looks into the number of consultancies we have given to
clients by preparing the plan and estimates for residences, it has
crossed 6,000. We do get a lot of enquiries from the Middle East
and also Europe seeking a plan under Vastu," Suresh told IANS.
Shibhu K.R., a real estate agent who deals with non-resident
Keralites, said Vastu was not so much in demand when he entered
the business a decade ago.
"With property prices soaring by over 100 percent in the past
decade, now we are very careful about buying land because when
prospective clients come to look for a plot, they take expert
advice on a home to be built on Vastu principles. We have burnt
our fingers a few times!" said Shibhu.
Many have had bad experiences while buying a house, converting
them to the ancient Indian building philosophy.
K.C. Babu, a retired government official settled in Kottayam,
never believed in the science of Vastu. But when several marriage
proposals for his son did not work out, he decided to apply it to
his already renovated home.
"For more than a year, not a single proposal for my son could be
finalised and I felt jittery. So a friend one day brought a Vastu
expert to my home and he immediately identified the problem," Babu
"While renovating my home, I had shifted the front door of the
house. The Vastu expert asked me to bring it back to the original
position and I did. Believe me, the very next proposal got
finalised and my son's marriage was fixed," Babu told IANS.
Likewise, Roy Cherian, a Christian, is taking no chances. A
businessman in Qatar and currently on vacation in Kottayam, he has
finally decided not to demolish the more than 90-year-old
ancestral home he inherited.
"I have built a new home and was not very keen to maintain the
traditional one, which usually remains locked up. A Vastu expert
advised me to knock down the extensions made over the years but
retain the main structure. He said it would bring more harm than
good if I demolished the entire structure," said Cherian.
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