To mark the 15th anniversary of Ancestral Goa, Big Foot a collection of 6,200 footprints of people from different walks of life that had some link with this place, was unveiled by the children of its promoter.
Karishma and Adriel Alvares undertook the task of collecting footprints of people who helped make Ancestral Goa, Big Foot what it is today since its conceptualization and also of as many visitors as possible who had seen the place and left their comments. An interesting aspect is that footprints of 50 underprivileged children.
Ancestral Goa, Big Foot that has today emerged as a must see for many tourists coming to Goa, was an unheard and untested concept when it opened shop 15 years ago. It shot to limelight first when Limca Book of Records recognized the laterite stone carving housed therein and today on an average attracts around 250 visitors per day.
The carving of Sant Mirabai with an ektara painstakingly prepared by Maendra Alvares by using local tools has been officially declared the longest carving in India on a single rock and the tools used to achieve this feat are on display in a case at the site.
Besides, a Goan village has been recreated at Ancestral Goa where visitors can walk through and get a feel of what life was a couple of decades ago in this land. Committed to protecting and conserving environment and nature, the entire complex is heavily wooded with fruit trees and also different spices and herbs.
To mark the 15th anniversary, the children collected footprints over a period of 15 days beginning with those of their parents and ending with that of Rajni Gupte a retired teacher whom the children consider to be their grandmother.
Explaining the concept of collecting the footprints, Karishma said: “In India touching the feet of the elders, the Guru and asking for blessings is a tradition. The feet may be the limit of the body but they are the limbs that hold upright the temple of life, therefore the Foot-Prints.” While Adriel added that it also teaches them humility.
On 15th November at 15:15 pm, a giant foot print collage took shape with 6200 foot prints collected in 15 days which measured a total of 14 meters in length and 15 meters in breadth. Forming a part of this collage is a 40 meters long canvas painting done by 70 artists on the theme: “Communal Harmony through Art”, of which 37 meters was painted earlier in 2008 on the 13th anniversary of Ancestral Goa.
Alongside the paintings, now, the artists have put their footprints as their signature.
The footprints also have message of peace and harmony from many people including Chief Minister Digambar Kamat, Power Minister who is also the local MLA Aleixo Sequeira, Forests Minister Felipe Neri rodrigues, Commissioner, NRI Affairs Eduardo Faleiro.