Sarvajna statue unveiled

Sarvajna statue unveiled

The two chief ministers vow to resolve issues through talks

Statue Diplomacy: Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa unveiling the Sarvajna statue (right) using a remote switch in Chennai on Thursday. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi is seen applauding . DH photo/Anand Bakshi

Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa pressed a button to unveil the statue. As the yellow satin cloth with a red border draped around the statue came down, the 12-year struggle of Kannada Sneha Sangha in Chennai to have the statue installed, also came to an end.

The Sangha got the permission to put up the statue way back in 1997. It was a long wait thereafter as there was opposition to the unveiling of the Tiruvalluvar statue in Bangalore.

It was a momentous occasion for both the states, which have been at the loggerheads over many issues. Besides politicians, scores of Kannadigas and Tamils, film personalities including Rajnikanth and B Sarojadevi, writers Dr Chidanandamurthy, G S Siddalingaiah and Doddarange Gowda were witness to the historic event.

Pramodini Deshpande, who sculpted the 9 ft bronze statue of Sarvajna, was also present.

In Bangalore, the Tiruvalluvar statue was unveiled after an 18-year-long wait due to the opposition from some Kannada organisations. It was unveiled by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi on August 9 in Halasuru.

Addressing the gathering in Chennai in Kannada,  Yeddyurappa said there were no issues between the states which could not be resolved through talks. Karunanidhi responded to him in the right spirit stating that he would welcome Yeddyurappa’s stand on resolving the vexed issues.

Yeddyurappa said welfare of both the states lies in resorting to a “give-and-take policy”. “It is only when we realise the importance of this policy can we find a solution to all disputes,” he said. Karnataka would wish to solve all contentious issues with Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra through talks in a similar fashion, he said.

Karunanidhi termed the statue of Sarvajna as a symbol of unity between the people of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. He said with the spirit of unity and cordial relationship, both the governments would try to fulfill the aspirations of the people.

Karunanidhi said his government had already initiated many steps in this regard. His government had been running Kannada schools for children of Kannada-speaking people. The government had prepared a syllabus for such schools and printed books for them.

Hundreds of Kannadigas had come from Bangalore and the boundary districts between the two states to witness the event which was very well organised.

The audience responded with claps as and when the speakers rendered vachanas of Sarvajna and Tiruvalluvar. Bangalore Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan’s executive director Mathur Krishnamurthy translated Yeddyurappa’s speech in Tamil.

Karunanidhi presented a replica of Thiruvarur chariot to Yeddyurappa. Film actors Jayamala, Jayanthi, Ramesh Aravind, Prakash Rai, Tara were present. Rajnikanth surprised the audience by walking into the VIPs’ gallery within a few minutes after the programme began. Sculptors of Tiruvalluvar  and Sarvajna statues Maninagappa and Promodini Deshpande were felicitated on the occasion.

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