RIP Karunanidhi: Thambi reaches his Anna’s abode

Chennai: DMK president and five-time chief minister of Tamilnadu, M Karunanidhi, was given a State funeral this evening. He was buried close to the tomb of his mentor and DMK founder C N Annadurai.

The party had to go to the court to get permission to bury Karunanidhi in the Marina, close to Anna’s memorial.

It was past noon when the court allowed the Marina cremation and then work began on a war-footing to meet the deadline and prepare theĀ  area for the evening.

The cortege left Rajaji Hall this evening at 4.30 and reached Anna Square around 6.30 pm.

The whole route was filled with DMK cadres and his admirers that only heads were visible.

Once the gun carriage reached Marina, the defence personnel moved in with precision.

Since it was to be a State funeral, Tamilnadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit took the salute during the sounding of the Last Post.

After the various leader paid their tributes in the form of wreaths, it was the turn of the family to pay their last respects.

Karunanidhi’s big family trooped in and paid an emotional tribute to him.

After his body was shifted to the sandalwood coffin that was made to order with the interesting epitaph that ‘one who worked tirelessly is now taking rest’. According to his son M K Stalin, he had expressed a wish to have this epitaph on his coffin, 33 years ago.

Following rituals, the coffin was sealed and lowered into the pit that had been dug hastily this evening.

The whole family – including his grown-up sons Alagiri and Stalin – was seen weeping uncontrollably as the coffin was sealed and lowered gently into the pit.

While paying tribute to Annadurai after his death, Karunanidhi had sought his mentor’s heart ‘on loan’ which he promised to return later at his feet. With his cremation taking place close to Anna’s tomb, Karunanidhi has reached his resting place and kept his word.

NT Bureau