Embattled Karunanidhi turns 88 on Friday

M Karunanidhi
Chennai, Jun 2: Going through a tough time in his personal and political life, DMK President and former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi turns 88 on Friday, June 3 amid continuing suspense over his daughter Kanimozhi's bail plea and his party coping with the election drubbing.

The decades-old party, founded by Dravidian veteran C N Annadurai, intends to make the birthday an opportunity to redeem itself, with all claims of coming back to power on the basis of performance falling flat and the 2G spectrum scam making a heavy dent on its image.

Kanimozhi and DMK's trusted member and former Telecom Minister A Raja are cooling their heels in Delhi''s Tihar jail for their alleged role in the 2G scam, often described by Karunanidhi's archrival and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa as that of "Himalayan proportions."

At a time when speculations are abuzz that Karunanidhi may choose to remain low profile with the odds heavily stacked against his party, the DMK last week gave a clarion call to its supporters to go all guns blazing over his birthday.

"To prove that DMK, which has continued to work for the oppressed Dravidian people, has not done away with its efforts to continue working for the Tamil people, we are duty-bound to celebrate the birthday of our leader," party general secretary K Anbazhagan had said last week.

He had urged the party followers to celebrate Karunanidhi's birthday in every nook and corner of the state.

He had urged the party followers celebrate Karunanidhi's birthday in every nook and corner. The DMK's woes continue with it failing to qualify to be even the principal opposition party as fledgling DMDK had secured more seats.

A five-time Chief Minister, Karunanidhi has had an impeccable record of not having lost an election in his political career that started at the age of 13 when he first participated in an anti-Hindi agitation.

In a 50 year political career, he has rubbed shoulders with many stalwarts, including the Late Indira Gandhi and former Prime Minister AB Vajpayee, late MG Ramachandran (AIADMK founder) and Congress veteran and former Chief Minister, K Kamaraj, among others.

The playwright-politician had put his retirement plans on the backburner following succession issues between siblings MK Alagiri and MK Stalin.

The patriarch had hinted at quitting politics two years back even as he is facing health issues, but succession issues have delayed his plans.

He has finally managed to represent his native Thiruvarur district for the first time in his political career in the present Tamil Nadu Assembly, after it become a general constituency.

His entry to the Assembly marks his 12th appearance as a legislator.


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