Though the 94-year-old Dravidian stalwart and five-time Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu was laid to rest on Thursday, August 7, for both Dravida Munnetra Kazhagham (DMK) leaders and workers, the memory of their beloved leader never fades. In an attempt to keep alive the memory of Karunanidhi beyond death, DMK has kick started a campaign to pressurize the government to confer posthumous Bharat Ratna, the highest civilian award, for Kalaignar Karunanidhi.
DMK member Tiruchi Siva raised this demand on Friday in Rajya Sabha. He said that Kalaignar was the tallest leader of the country and had contributed 80 years of his life to public service, fighting for the cause of the downtrodden, backward and the suppressed people.
“I would urge the Government to confer upon him posthumous Bharat Ratna Award which will be a real tribute for his outstanding and exemplary work which had left an indelible mark in the annals of history,” said the MP.
Elaborating on his demand for Bharat Ratna for Karunanidhi, the DMK MP said:: “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 he also wrote scripts for 80 movies. Sir, he is unparalleled and he made a mark in all walks of life”.
He added that the late leader was fighting till his last breath for social justice, secularism, state autonomy and self-respect.
Many members, including Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad, associated themselves with Siva's demand. Congress members supported his demand by thumping their desks. The DMK on Friday asked the Centre to posthumously confer Bharat Ratna, the nation's highest civilian award, upon the party patriarch M. Karunanidhi in recognition of his outstanding work and several achievements.