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‘Tallest leader and a Dravidian stalwart’: DMK seeks Bharat Ratna for Karunanidhi

The DMK on Friday demanded the nation’s highest civilian award, Bharat Ratna, for party patriarch M. Karunanidhi who passed away in Chennai on August 7.

The party said the award will be a real tribute to the late Tamil Nadu leader’s outstanding and exemplary work which had left an indelible mark in history.

Karunanidhi, who led the DMK for five decades, was the Chief Minister for 19 years spread over five terms.

Raising the issue during Zero Hour in the Rajya Sabha, DMK’s Tiruchi Shiva dubbed Karunanidhi the “tallest leader of the country and a Dravidian stalwart”.

“He lived five years short of a century, out of which he contributed 80 years to the public life, fighting for the cause of the downtrodden, backward and the suppressed people.

“He was an outstanding orator, a prolific writer, a novelist, a short-story writer, a philosopher, a philanthropist and also a dramatist. He was an actor and also wrote scripts for 80 movies,” Shiva said enumerating the achievements of Karunanidhi.

He said that Karunanidhi was “unparalleled” and made a mark in all walks of life.

“His life cannot be described in words. He was a staunch and untiring soldier. He was fighting till his last breath, for social justice, secularism, state autonomy and self-respect.

“I would urge the government to confer upon him posthumously the Bharat Ratna, which will be a real tribute to his outstanding and exemplary work which had left an indelible mark in the annals of history,” the DMK lawmaker said.

Karunanidhi had been keeping unwell and was out of active politics for nearly two years. His public appearances had also become limited. He was hospitalised twice in December 2016, and since then he had been in and out of the hospital.

Following the deterioration in his health, his son MK Stalin was named the Working President of the party on January 4, 2017 at a meeting of the DMK’s general council in Chennai. Karunanidhi, however, continued to hold the post of President till his death.

( With IANS inputs )

Source: The News Minute