#JustIn: Kaliagnar M. Karunanidhi Passes Away At 94

#JustIn: Kaliagnar M. Karunanidhi Passes Away At 94

Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) party cadres react after Kauvery Hospital released a bulletin on party president M Karunanidhi's health in the evening, in Chennai, on Monday.

"With deep anguish, we announce the demise of our beloved Kalaignar".

"Despite the best possible efforts by a team of doctors and nurses to resuscitate him, he failed to respond".

#05:06 PM: Chennai Police bars public entry inside Kauvery Hospital, where the DMK patriarch is undergoing treatment.

In 1957, he was first elected to the Tamil Nadu assembly from the Kulithalai assembly of Thiruchirapalli district, one among the first 15 MLAs elected to the then Madras Legislative Assembly on a DMK ticket.

Born on June 3, 1924 at Thirukkuvalai into a family of Nadaswaram exponents who had traditionally played in temples, Karunanidhi, who was inclined towards Periyar E.V. Ramasamy's atheism and rationalism, joined his self-respect movement as a teenager. In 2014, his party contests the election alone and loses.

India's two national parties, Modi's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party and the opposition Congress, have little presence in Tamil Nadu, a state of almost 70 million people where politics have been dominated by the DMK and Jayalalithaa's AIADMK.

Karunanidhi also started a school newspaper that mushroomed into the "Murasoli", now known as the DMK's official newspaper. He was one of the senior most leaders of India. Mr Karunanidhi's DMK swept the election, riding a wave of anti-incumbency.

He and Ms Jayalalithaa, who died in 2016, alternated as chief ministers over the past three decades in the state. Both were bitter foes of Karunanidhi in politics.

Karunanidhi, a charismatic self-styled champion of the poor, had been in intensive care since July 28 in Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu state.

He is survived by two wives and six children, including DMK working president and heir apparent M.K. Stalin and daughter Kanimozhi, a Rajya Sabha MP.

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