Karunanidhi wins Marina battle even after death

Karunanidhi wins Marina battle even after death

 DMK working president MK Stalin with family members during DMK chief M Karunanidhi's funeral ceremony at Anna Memorial, in Chennai on Wednesday. PTI Photo

And on Wednesday morning, just hours after his death, Karunanidhi won a legal battle for a resting place at the historic Marina Beach.

Hearing a petition filed by DMK seeking a direction to the Tamil Nadu Government for allotting land near C N Annadurai’s memorial for burying Karunanidhi, the bench headed by acting Chief Justice of Madras High Court Huluvadi G Ramesh asked the government to provide a place for "decent burial" to lay the mortal remains of Karunanidhi on the Marina Beach.

The DMK knocked at the doors of the Madras High Court after the AIADMK Government led by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami refused to allot land inside the memorial of Karunanidhi’s mentor C N Annadurai for the DMK chief’s burial.

DMK contended that Karunanidhi deserves land near Annadurai’s memorial since he had served the state for more than five decades and had expressed his desire to be buried near the resting place of his mentor.

As the news of the high court allowing Karunanidhi to be buried at Marina Beach was announced at the Rajaji Hall, his son and DMK working president M K Stalin broke down and thanked people gathered at the campus for their wishes.

"The government wanted to ensure there is chaos, but the court has delivered the verdict in favour of us. Let us all remain calm and ensure that our Thalaivar is given a peaceful burial,” Stalin told the crowd at Rajaji Hall.

At the court, the Tamil Nadu Government put up a spirited defence saying only serving chief ministers were allotted land on Marina Beach and those who were not in power were buried or cremated elsewhere.

However, the DMK lawyers said not burying Karunanidhi on the Marina Beach would amount to not giving him a "decent burial" and insult lakhs of followers.

Cries of Vendum, Vendum, Marina Vendum (We need Marina) rented the air in most places in Chennai as DMK cadre took to the street.

Though Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) rules prohibit any new construction on the Marina Beach, the government made special concession to allow former chief minister J Jayalalithaa’s burial and building of her memorial in 2016.

The DMK expected the courtesy being extended to its leader and was disappointed with party working president M K Stalin writing to Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami twice on Tuesday requesting for land on the Marina.

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