Thiruvananthapuram, Apr 12: Pala, April 12: The mortal remains of Kerala Congress (M) Chairman and former state minister KM Mani were laid to rest with full state honours with Gun Salute at his native place of Pala Thursday.
The funeral service which was held at St Thomas Cathedran cemetery, Pala was led by Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, Cardinal Mar Baselios Cleemis Bava. Archbishop of Trivandrum Soosa Pakiam M., Pala bishop Joseph Kallarangattu, and Kanjirappally bishop Mathew Arackal were the co-celebrants. Following the service, the body was buried at the cemetery by 6.45 p.m. The funeral functions began by afternoon and the hearse reached the cathedral at 4.30 p.m. even as the mourners jostled for space to enter the church.
As a mark of respect to the departed soul, the district collector of Kottayam has made all arrangements for the last rites with full State Honours with Gun Salute. After the funeral ceremony, a condolence meeting held here in which people from various walks of life participated.
Earlier, the Kerala Police provided security to the ambulance carrying the mortal remains throughout the road journey to Kottayam from Ernakulam by road. The mortal remains was placed in Kerala Congress (M) State Committee Office in Kottayam and at Thirunakkara Maidan for paying public homage and from there to his native place in Pala on Wednesday night.
Mani’s mortal remains were brought to his residence at 7 a.m. As the casket carrying his body was placed in front of the Karingozhakkal house, tributes poured in from far and wide as people from various walks of lives queued up to catch a final glimpse of their leader.
Among those who paid homage here included Congress general secretaries Mukul Vasnik, K.C. Venugopal, and Oommen Chandy, Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac, and actors Mammootty and Renji Panikkar. A few political leaders were overwhelmed by grief. Congress leader A.K. Antony found it hard to hold back his tears while pacifying Kuttiyamma, wife of the late leader. (UNI)