New Delhi: Co-convener of Swadeshi Jagran Manch and RSS ideologue in Tamil Nadu, Swaminathan Gurumurthy, told News18 that DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi should not be buried at Marina Beach.
“All the former chief ministers, including Rajaji and Kamraj, have been given burial on the other side near the IIT. It is only sitting Chief Ministers who are buried on the Marina Beach. So technically, former Chief Minister should be on the other side where other former CMs are buried...I’m just giving a rationale,” said Gurumurthy.
The Tamil Nadu government has rejected the request that was made by Karunanidhi’s political heir MK Stalin - to grant him a burial and a memorial on the Marina beach - creating a furore among DMK supporters, many of who have resorted to violence and clashed with the police. Police has had to lathi-charge angry mobs just outside Kauveri hospital in Chennai.
Sources close to Karunanidhi’s family say they wanted the last rites of the five-time former Tamil Nadu CM to be conducted, and a memorial built in his honour alongside those of the other stalwart Dravidian leaders - DMK founder C Annadurai, AIADMK founder MG Ramachandran and his political heir and former Tamil Nadu CM J Jayalalithaa.
But Gurumurthy said the issue should not be given a political hue.
The state government has offered alternative sites for the burial including at Gandhi Mandapam at Guindy.
The Chief Minister also raised the issue that there were at least three Public Interest Litigations before the Madras High Court which said that building memorials at Marina were against the Coastal Regulation Zone rules.
When AIADMK's chief minister Jayalalithaa died in December 2016, the ruling AIADMK had circumvented the rule by burying her in the existing memorial for her mentor and former chief minister MG Ramachandran.
The ruling AIADMK is also going to build a memorial modelled on a phoenix to symbolise Jayalalithaa's grit and political comebacks. To be surrounded by landscaped gardens, the memorial is expected to cost Rs 50 crore.