‘Kalaignar’ Karunanidhi’s 100th birth anniversary: Political leaders pay tributes

Congress leaders Sonia, Rahul Gandhi, and National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah paid tributes at an event held at the DMK office in Delhi.

BySouth First Desk

Published Jun 03, 2024 | 2:24 PMUpdatedJun 03, 2024 | 2:24 PM

Leader pay tributes to M Karunanidhi

On the occasion of the 100th birth anniversary of former CM and founder of the DMK Muthuvel Karunanidhi, fondly known as ‘Kalaignar’, political leaders from across party lines paid tributes in New Delhi and Chennai.

DMK president and Chief Minister MK Stalin on Monday, 3 June, paid floral tributes at the memorial, in Chennai, of late party patriarch Karunanidhi on his birth anniversary, which also marks the completion of year-long (2023-24) centenary celebrations.

Stalin showered flowers at the Marina beachfront memorial of Karunanidhi (1924-2018) and later unveiled a souvenir marking the culmination of centenary celebrations.

The DMK chief also paid floral tributes to the decorated portraits of the late leader at downtown Gopalapuram (Karunanidhi’s residence) and at the office of “Murasoli,” the party’s official organ.

The Dravidian party president, in his message, showered encomium on Karunanidhi and reaffirmed the party’s commitment to journey on the path paved by him.

DMK leader RS Bharathi speaking to the news agency ANI in Chennai, said, “We have been celebrating this (centenary celebrations of K Karunanidhi’s birth) since last year, but since the MCC was imposed, we could not celebrate in a grand manner as we had planned. After 6 June, we will celebrate grandly.”

Rahul, and Sonia pay tributes

Meanwhile, Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, and National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah paid tributes at an event held at the DMK office in Delhi.

Speaking at the event, Sonia Gandhi said, “It’s my pleasure to be here with my colleagues from the DMK on the very auspicious occasion of the 100th anniversary of Dr Kalaignar Karunanidhi.”

“I had the good fortune of meeting him on many occasions, listening to what he had to say and benefiting from his words of wisdom and advice. I feel fortunate to have met him,” she said and extended her best wishes to those present on the occasion.

After paying his tributes to the leader, Rahul Gandhi speaking to the media said, “A great leader of Tamil Nadu – somebody who defended the culture, and language of the Tamil people. It is an honour for me to come here today.”

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‘Great son of India’

Farooq Abdullah, speaking to the press said, “One of the great sons of India to serve this nation. With all his thoughts, all his actions and all his life, he served for the betterment of this nation.”

Further praising Karunanidhi as a person who not only thought of Tamil Nadu, but the whole country, Farooq Abdullah added, “That is why I have come all the way from Kashmir. I’ve had a great relationship with him, and he always stood by us during difficult times.”

The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister added, “I hope India survives as a secular nation and those divisive forces that are dividing us will not succeed in their division. That is what India should be and that is what we want India to be for all of us. That is what our Constitution is. We will do everything to protect that Constitution.”

CPI (M) senior leader Sitaram Yechury also spoke of the leader in high terms, calling Karunanidhi a political stalwart, Yechury said, “He was one of the most important workers for social change. His work and struggle is an example to all.”

Further calling him a leader par excellence, Yechury said Karunanidhi was someone who could empathise with the ground-level worker.

The general secretary of CPI (M) D Raja said, “The development of Tamil Nadu cannot be written without mentioning Muthamizharinagar leader artist. Kalainar was a great leader who worked not only for state rights, language rights, social justice and culture but also for democratically building national politics.”

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(Edited by Sumavarsha Kandula with PTI inputs)