Purasawakkam, also known as Purasaiwakkam or Purasai / Purasawalkam, is a residential shopping area in the district of Chennai in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. It is close to the Chennai Central and Chennai Egmore railway stations.

Purasai, Purasawakkam, purasaiwakkam
Coordinates: 13.08593°N 80.25047°E / 13.08593; 80.25047
StateTamil Nadu
  BodyChennai Corporation
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
Vehicle registrationTN-01
Planning agencyCMDA
Civic agencyChennai Corporation


The name "Purasai" came from the name of a tree called 'purasai maram' in Tamil. In olden days this area was abundant with these trees. Also, there were a lot of stables at once in an age which was referred as (horse) "puravi" in Tamil, puravivakkam later termed as purasaiwakkam. The Gangadeeshwarar temple near the Purasawalkam tank speaks about this history. The tank belongs to this temple.

The Gangadeeshwarar temple is very famous temple for ages. Here the Shiva Lingam which is situated at mulasthanam, has a unique feature of wetness throughout the year. Even in the drought conditions and severe summer seasons, the wetness near the Shiva Lingam is observed.

Another story is that, in 1799, Company Assistant Surgeon John Underwood of the British East India Company in the then Madrasapattanam, established in "Poorshewak", now known as Purasawalkam, what may be considered the first hospital in India meant solely for the Indian poor; the Native Infirmary. [1]


Purasawalkam legislative assembly constituency is a part of Chennai Central (Lok Sabha constituency).[2]


Kellys Signal on the West and Doveton Signal on the East. Further this area is still known by the prominent theatres like Motcham, Mekala, Abhirami, Roxy, though all of have been demolished now.


Abirami Mega Mall on Purasawalkam high road

Abirami Mega Mall, is a Multiplex including four main cinemas and shopping outlets.[3] Tana Street, the heart of Purasawalkam, is one of the busiest streets in Chennai. It has jewelry, vegetables, clay pot cooking and pharmacies. It also features a busy grocery market. There are also many textile showrooms. Dr. Ambedkar Government Law College's boys hostel is also situated here opposite to Motcham theater.

Gangadeeshwarar temple in Purasawalkam



  • Hindustan Institute of Maritime Training(HIMT)
  • Madras Veterinary College
  • Madras Theological Seminary &College
  • Lutheran Theological College
  • Hindustan Bible College
  • Chengalvaraya Polytechnic College
  • Guru Shanthi Vijay Jain College for Women
  • Government College of Fine Arts, Chennai


  • Tulsi Adarsh Vidya Mandir Nuesery & Primary School
  • Satya Matriculation Higher Secondary School
  • Alagappa Matriculation Higher Secondary School,
  • Chinmaya Vidyalaya (Taylors Road)
  • Bhavan's Rajaji Vidyashram,
  • J.M matriculation school
  • Sindhi Model Senior Secondary School
  • St.Joseph's Anglo Indian Boys Higher Secondary School
  • St. Aloysius Anglo Indian Girls Hr.Sec School
  • Sir MCTM Boys Hr.Sec. School
  • Sir MCTM Girls Hr.Sec. School
  • Kola Saraswathi Senior Secondary School
  • Bentick Girls Hr.Sec. School
  • St.Pauls Hr.Sec. School
  • Guru Shree Shanti Vijai Jain Vidyalaya
  • St. Matthias Anglo Indian Higher Secondary School,
  • CSI Bains Hr.Sec. School,
  • Doveton Corrie Anglo-Indian Boys Hr.Sec. School
  • Doveton Corrie Anglo-Indian Girls Hr.Sec. School
  • Doveton Matric Hr. Sec School
  • C.S.I Ewarts Girls Hr.Sec. School
  • Anita Methodist Matriculation Higher Secondary School
  • St. Andrews Boys Hr.Sec. School
  • ELM Fabricus Hr.Sec. School
  • St.Joseph's Girls Hr.Sec School
  • St.Joseph's Primary School
  • Raja Nursery School
  • Corporation Girls School
  • Corporation Boys School
  • Sri Muthukuaramswamy Hr.Sec School
  • T.E.L.C.Primary School
  • Seventh-Day Adventist Matric. Hr.Sec School (Vepery)


  1. Tales of Old Madras and New by S Muthiah
  2. "List of Parliamentary and Assembly Constituencies" (PDF). Tamil Nadu. Election Commission of India. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 May 2006. Retrieved 8 October 2008.
  3. "Multiplex Unique!". Chennai, India: The Hindu. 18 November 2007. Retrieved 18 November 2007.
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