India

Karunanidhi’s last journey begins, to be buried near Anna grave at Marina

Huge crowd gathered at Chennai's Marina Beach for M Karunanidhi's funeral.

Chennai: After the Madras High Court granted permission for Karunanidhi’s burial at Marina beach, a huge crowd of supporters have joined the funeral procession of the DMK leader.

The former Tamil Nadu chief minister M Karunanidhi on Wednesday began his final journey on a flower-decked military vehicle from Rajaji Hall where his body was lying since early morning.

DMK leader and Karunanidhi’s son MK Stalin, accompanied by party leaders, walked ahead of the military vehicle as the funeral procession made slow progress, with thousands crowding the streets.

The tri-colour covered body of the veteran politician was put on a military vehicle by military personnel shortly before 4 pm.
Karunanidhi’s body will be interred in a sandalwood casket and lowered into the earth at Marina Beach. Many waved DMK’s red-and-black flags and flashed pictures of Karunanidhi.
The DMK leader’s final resting place will be near his mentor and DMK founder and former Chief Minister C.N. Annadurai.
The DMK had earlier said the vehicle carrying Karunanidhi’s body will reach Anna Square on the Marina Beach, covering a distance of less than three kilometres.
Stalin has appealed to people to keep calm during the final journey. Shortly afterwards, two persons were killed in a stampede outside Rajaji Hall.

The DMK said the AIADMK’s refusal to give six-feet land to bury the five-time chief minister next to his mentor CN Annadurai’s grave “reeks of pettiness and political vendetta”. Karunanidhi died on August 7 in Chennai, at the age of 94. Actor Rajinikanth and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee visited his house.

The Tamil Nadu government announced 7 days mourning in his honour.

As per M Karunanidhi’s wish, the wordings — “The person who had worked without rest is resting here” — has been sculpted on the casket.

The funeral procession could take 2 hours to reach Marina Beach, where M Karunanidhi will be buried. Earlier, a scuffle broke out between the crowd and police, and the latter resorted to lathi-charge

Former Congress president Sonia Gandhi termed the death of the DMK patriarch as a “personal loss”. In a letter to Karunanidhi’s son MK Stalin, she said Karunanidhi was like a father figure to her.

“For me, Kalaignar’s loss is very personal. He always showed me great kindness and consideration, which I can never forget. He was like a father figure to me. We shall not see the like of Kalaignar again, and our nation is poorer without his wise statesmanship, and his dedication to our country and our people,” she wrote in the letter.

 

When the Madras High Court gave permission in the morning for the burial of M Karunanidhi at Marina Beach, Karunanidhi’s son MK Stalin broke down.

(With inputs from Agencies)

RELATED ITEMS:
Show More