Pranab, Moily sing paeans to Kengal
Rich tributes were paid to the ‘architect’ of the Vidhana Soudha, Kengal Hanumanthaiah, on his 104th birth anniversary on Saturday.
Senior leaders from the Centre and the State, who took part in the celebration stressed on the importance of emulating the second chief minister’s political and administrative philosophies.
Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, who has had the opportunity of working with Kengal, said the Vidhana Soudha did not merely symbolise an architectural beauty, but it “represented the aspirations of the newly liberated people of India”.
Mukherjee said that on the advice of former prime minister Indira Gandhi, he started interacting with Kengal. “I had many interactions with him, and each time I came out with my mind feeling freer.”
Mukherjee said Kengal’s vision was freeing the people from hunger, obscurantism, fragmentation and mediocrity. He also said Indian leaders should work relentlessly towards achieving the socio-economic transformation of the country, which was the aspiration of people like Kengal.
Hailing him as a top decision maker and a great visionary of a modern State, Mukherjee said thanks to leaders like Kengal, the integration of all States were possible within ten years of India attaining independence. He also said while the Centre was making concerted efforts towards setting up of a strong Lokpal and Lokayuktas, Kengal had contemplated accountability by public representatives in the Administrative Reforms Commission report.
Mukherjee said India would one day achieve the objectives of great leaders such as Jawaharlal Nehru and Kengal, and to do that stakeholders concerned should come together and not work in isolation.
Veerappa Moily, Union Corporate Affairs Minister, urged the government to publish the diary penned by Kengal. He said that for 50 years Kengal had maintained a diary, and that if the government published it, it would serve as a great monument.
Moily said the Vidhana Soudha was Kengal’s ‘amara kalyana’. “He handpicked every stone of this building. He is said to have told Kuvempu that while the poet had written an epic on paper, he himself had written an epic poem on stone,” he said.
Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda said that he would propose to the Centre to release a stamp with Kengal’s image on it, to mark his contribution. Congress leader D K Shivakumar urged the government to release a stamp, and also celebrate Kengal’s birthday every year as ‘Farmer’s Day’.