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Muthuvel Karunanidhi (born as Daksinamoorthy on 3 June 1924) is an Indian politician and the 3rd Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. He is the President of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam , a political party based in Tamil Nadu. He became Chief Minister for the first time in 1969. On 13 May 2006, he became the Chief Minister for the fifth time. He is also known for his writing works in the Tamil film industry. During the Thooku Medai play, M. R. Radha gave him the title of Kalaignar, which he is still called by his supporters till date.
|3rd Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu|
13 May 2006 – 15 May 2011
|Governor||Surjit Singh Barnala|
|Deputy||M. K. Stalin (2009-2011)|
|Preceded by||J. Jayalalithaa|
|Succeeded by||J. Jayalalithaa|
13 May 1996 – 13 May 2001
|Governor||Krishna Kant (addit. charge)
M. Fathima Beevi
|Preceded by||J. Jayalalithaa|
|Succeeded by||O. Panneerselvam|
27 January 1989 – 30 January 1991
|Governor||P. C. Alexander
Surjit Singh Barnala
|Preceded by||Janaki Ramachandran|
|Succeeded by||J. Jayalalithaa|
15 March 1971 – 31 January 1976
|Governor||Kodardas Kalidas Shah|
|Preceded by||President's rule|
|Succeeded by||President's rule|
10 February 1969 – 4 January 1971
|Governor||Sardar Ujjal Singh|
|Preceded by||V. R. Nedunchezhiyan (acting)|
|Succeeded by||President's rule|
|Member of the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly
15 May 2011
|Preceded by||U. Mathivanan|
3 June 1924
Thirukuvalai, Madras Presidency, British India (now in Nagapattinam District, Tamil Nadu, India)
|Political party||Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (from 1949)|
|Justice Party, Dravidar Kazhagam (before 1949)|
|Spouse(s)||Padmavathi Ammal[dead link]
|Relations||See Karunanidhi family|
|Children||M. K. Muthu
M. K. Alagiri
M. K. Stalin
M. K. Tamilarasu
M. K. Selvi
M. K. Kanimozhi
|Residence||Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India|
Early life and familyEdit
Born in Thirukkuvalai village in Nagapattinam district, he was born as a son of Muthuvelu and Anju. His original name is Dakshinamurthy and he has Telugu ancestry. Karunanidhi was more interested in drama, poetry, and literature during his school season. Karunanidhi, who was inspired by the speaker Azhagirisamy, considered the pillar of the Justice Party, completely engaged in social movements at his 14th age. With the help of some of his students in the field of youth, the "youth revitalized the organization". The organization helped young people develop their inspiration and writing. After some time, the state was formed as a state-level "All Students Club." This was the first student division of the Dravidian movement. Karunanidhi also engaged the student community in social work with other members. DMK The party's official newspaper, Murasoli, started developing a newspaper for its members. The first major opposition to Karunanidhi's support for Tamil politics involved in the Kallukudi demonstration (1953). The original name of this industrial city is Kallagudi. Dalmiya, which set up a cement plant is from North India and changed the original name Kallakkudi to Dalmiyapuram. DMK opposed the name change as it was seen as North Indian oppression of Tamil Nadu. Karunanidhi and his comrades posted papers on the name "Dalmiyaapuram" in the railway station name board and block the passage of the trains. Two people died in the demonstration by the police action and Karunanidhi was arrested.
Karunanidhi began his career as a screenwriter in the Tamil film industry. Through his wit and oratorical skills he rapidly rose as a popular politician. He was famous for writing historical and social (reformist) stories which propagated the socialist and rationalist ideals of the Dravidian movement to which he belonged. He first began using Tamil cinema to propagate his political ideas through the movie Parasakthi. Parasakthi was a turning point in Tamil cinema, as it espoused the ideologies of the Dravidian movement and also introduced two prominent actors of Tamil filmdom, Sivaji Ganesan and S. S. Rajendran. The movie was initially banned but was eventually released in 1952. It was a huge box office hit, but its release was marred with controversies. The movie was opposed by orthodox Hindus since it contained elements that criticized Brahmanism. Two other movies written by Karunanidhi that contained such messages were Panam and Thangarathnam. These movies contained themes such as widow remarriage, abolition of untouchability, self-respect marriages, abolition of zamindari and abolition of religious hypocrisy. As his movies and plays with strong social messages became popular, they suffered from increased censorship; two of his plays in the 1950s were banned.
Karunanidhi rose to fame as a scriptwriter for the Modern Theatres Studio in Salem about 350 kilometers from Madras or present day Chennai. T R Sundaram, the owner of Modern Theatres Studio at Yercaud foot hills, was instrumental in honouring the talents of Karunanidhi, Jayalalithaa and M G Ramachandran.
Karunanidhi is known for his contributions to Tamil literature. His contributions cover a wide range: poems, letters, screenplays, novels, biographies, historical novels, stage-plays, dialogues and movie songs. He has written Kuraloviam for Thirukural, Tholkaappiya Poonga, Poombukar, as well as many poems, essays and books. Apart from literature, Karunanidhi has also contributed to the Tamil language through art and architecture. Like the Kuraloviyam, in which Kalaignar wrote about Thirukkural, through the construction of Valluvar Kottam he gave an architectural presence to Thiruvalluvar, in Chennai. At Kanyakumari, Karunanidhi constructed a 133-foot-high statue of Thiruvalluvar in honour of the scholar.
The books written by Karunanidhi's include Sanga Thamizh, Thirukkural Urai, Ponnar Sankar, Romapuri Pandian, Thenpandi Singam, Vellikizhamai, Nenjukku Needhi, Iniyavai Irubathu and Kuraloviam. His books of prose and poetry number more than 100.
Karunanidhi's stage plays include: Manimagudam, Ore Ratham, Palaniappan, Thooku Medai, Kagithapoo, Naane Arivali, Vellikizhamai, Udhayasooriyan and Silappathikaram.
At the age of 20, Karunanidhi went to work for Jupiter Pictures as a scriptwriter. His first film, Rajakumaari, gained him much popularity. It was here that his skills as a scriptwriter were honed, which extended to several films.
- Ponnar Shankar (2011)
- Ilaignan (2011)
- Pen Singam (2010)
- Uliyin Osai (2008)
- Pasa Kiligal (2006)
- Kannamma (2005)
- Mannin Maindhan (2005)
- Puthiya Parasakthi (1996)
- Madurai Meenakshi (1993)
- Kavalukku Kettikaran (1990)
- Nyaya Tharasu (1989)
- Paasa Paravaigal (1988)
- Paadatha Thenikkal (1988)
- Neethikku Thandanai (1987)
- Palaivana Rojakkal (1985)
- Kaalam Pathil Sollum (1980)
- Pillaiyo Pillai (1972)
- Avan Pithana? (1966)
- Poomalai (1965)
- Poompuhar (1964)
- Kaanchi Thalaivan (1963)
- Iruvar Ullam (1963)
- Thayilla Pillai (1961)
- Arasilangkumari (1961)
- Kuravanji (1960)
- Pudhumai Pithan (1957)
- Pudhaiyal (1957)
- Raja Rani (1956)
- Rangoon Radha (1956)
- Malaikkallan (1954)
- Thirumbi Paar (1953)
- Panam (1952)
- Manohara (1952)
- Manamagal (1952)
- Parasakthi (1952)
- Manthiri Kumari (1950)
- Marudhanaattu Ilavarasi (1950)
- Abimanyu (1948)
- Rajakumaari (1947)
Entry into politicsEdit
Karunanidhi entered politics at the age of 14, inspired by a speech by Alagiriswamii of the Justice Party, and participated in Anti-Hindi agitations. He founded an organisation for the local youth of his locality. He circulated a handwritten newspaper called Manavar Nesan to its members. Later he founded a student organisation called Tamil Nadu Tamil Manavar Mandram, which was the first student wing of the Dravidan Movement. Karunanidhi involved himself and the student community in social work with other members. Here he started a newspaper for its members, which grew into Murasoli, the DMK party's official newspaper.
The first major protest that aided Karunanidhi in gaining ground in Tamil politics was his involvement in the Kallakudi agitation in Kallakudi. Original name of this industrial town was Kallakudi and it was changed to Dalmiapuram after a cement mogul who built a cement plant there. DMK wanted to change the name back to Kallakudi. In the protest Karunanidhi and his companions erased the name Dalmiapuram from the railway station and lay down on the tracks blocking the course of trains. Two people died in the protest and Karunanidhi was arrested.
Rise to powerEdit
At the age of 33, Karunanidhi entered the Tamil Nadu assembly winning the Kulithalai seat in the 1957 election. He became the DMK treasurer in 1961 and deputy leader of opposition in the state assembly in the year 1962 and when the DMK came to power in 1967, he became the minister for public works. When Annadurai expired in 1969, Karunanidhi became the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu and the first leader of DMK, since the leader post was left vacant for Periyar when Annadurai was alive (Annadurai was the general secretary only). He has held various positions in the party and government during his long career in Tamil Nadu political arena. However, he suffered multiple electoral defeats against his primary opponent M.G.Ramachandran's ADMK until the latter's death in 1987.
After a brief stint as Chief Minister during the late 1980s (his government was dismissed by the Central government on accusations of degrading Law and Order situation in the state), Karunanidhi became the CM of Tamil Nadu in 1996 following a sweeping electoral win in the preceding elections. Following a 5-year rule, his party again lost at the elections to J. Jayalalithaa's AIADMK in 2001. He was however back in power when he took over as chief Minister of Tamil Nadu on 13 May 2006 after his coalition defeated his main opponent J. Jayalalithaa in the May 2006 elections. He currently[update] represents the constituency of Tiruvarur in the Tamil Nadu state Legislative Assembly. He has been elected to the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly 13 times(from 1957 to 2016 elections) and once to the now abolished Tamil Nadu Legislative Council. At the end of the 5-year administration, the DMK lost the majority of seats in the legislative assembly of Tamil Nadu when elections were held in 2011, thereby ceding power again to the AIADMK under J. Jayalalithaa.
World Tamil ConferenceEdit
He delivered the special address on the inaugural day of 3rd World Tamil Conference held in Paris in 1970, and also on the inaugural day of 6th World Tamil Conference held in Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) in 1987. He penned the song "Semmozhiyaana Tamizh Mozhiyaam", the official theme song for the World Classical Tamil Conference 2010, that was set to tune by A. R. Rahman.
'Ulaga Tamizh Manadu' [ World Tamil Conference ], was the first coined word for the conference in 2010, however the IATR organisation that had right to conduct the conference was not happy hence change in name.
Awards and titlesEdit
- Annamalai University awarded him an honorary doctorate in 1971.
- He was awarded "Raja Rajan Award" by Tamil University, Thanjavur for his book Thenpandi Singam.
- On 15 December 2006, the Governor of Tamil Nadu and the Chancellor of Madurai Kamaraj University, Surjit Singh Barnala conferred an honorary doctorate on the Chief Minister on the occasion of the 40th annual convocation.
- In June 2007, the Tamil Nadu Muslim Makkal Katchi announced that it would confer the title "Friend of the Muslim Community" (Yaaran-E-Millath) upon M. Karunanidhi.
He has been indicted by the Sarkaria commission for corruption in allotting tenders for the Veeranam project. Indira Gandhi dismissed the Karunanidhi government based on charges of possible secession and corruption. In 2001, he was arrested on the charges of corruption in the construction of flyovers in Chennai. He and his party members were also charged under four Sections like IPC 120(b), IPC 167, IPC 420 and IPC 409.
Ram Setu remarksEdit
In response to the Sethusamudram controversy, Karunanidhi questioned the existence of the Hindu God Rama. He said 'It is said that there was a God thousands of years ago called Ram. Do not touch the bridge built by him. I ask who is this Ram? Which engineering college did he graduate from?" His remarks caused a firestorm of controversy. BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad accused Karunanidhi of religious discrimination when noting "We would like to know from Karunanidhi if he would make a similar statement against religious head of any other religion; chance are he may not."
Connections with LTTEEdit
The interim report of Justice Jain Commission, which oversaw the investigation into Rajiv Gandhi's assassination, indicted Karunanidhi for abetting the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The interim report recommended that Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi and the DMK party be held responsible for abetting Rajiv Gandhi's murderers. The final report contained no such allegations. In April 2009, in an interview to NDTV, Karunanidhi made a controversial remark stating that "Prabhakaran is my good friend" and also said, "India could not forgive the LTTE for assassinating Rajiv Gandhi".
Allegations of nepotismEdit
Karunanidhi has been accused by opponents, by some members of his party, and by other political observers of trying to promote nepotism.[page needed] Many political opponents and DMK party senior leaders have been critical of the rise of M. K. Stalin in the party. But some of the party men have pointed out that Stalin has come up on his own. He has faced a lot of hardship since 1975, when he was jailed under the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA) and was beaten up in jail so brutally during the Emergency that a fellow DMK party prisoner died trying to save him. Stalin was an MLA in 1989 and 1996 when his father Karunanidhi was the Chief Minister, but he was not inducted into the Cabinet. He became Chennai's 44th mayor and its first directly elected mayor in 1996. It was only in his fourth term as MLA that he was made a Minister in the Karunanidhi cabinet and then in 2009 was made the Deputy Chief Minister. His daughter Kanimozhi is a Rajya Sabha MP now.
Elections contested and positions heldEdit
|Year||Constituency||Result||Vote percentage||Opposition Candidate||Opposition Party||Opposition vote percentage|
|1957||Kulithalai||Won||K. A. Dharmalingam||INC|
|1962||Thanjavur||Won||A. Y. S. Parisutha Nadar||INC|
|1967||Saidapet||Won||S. G. Vinayagamurthy||INC|
|1971||Saidapet||Won||Kudanthai Ramalingam||Congress (O)|
|1977||Anna Nagar||Won||50.1||G. Krishnamurthy||ADMK||30.98|
|1996||Chepauk||Won||77.05||N.S. Nellai Kannan||INC||17.24|
|2006||Chepauk||Won||50.96||Dawood Miah Khan||Independent||38.25|
Posts in legislatureEdit
|Assembly||From||To||Position||Party - Number of seats
|Third Assembly||1962||1967||Deputy Leader of the Opposition||50/143|
|Fourth Assembly||1967||1969||State Minister for Public Works||138/233|
|Fourth Assembly||10 February 1969||5 January 1971||Chief Minister (1)||136/233|
|Fifth Assembly||15 March 1971||31 January 1976||Chief Minister (2)||182/203|
|Sixth Assembly||25 July 1977||17 February 1980||Leader of the Opposition (1)||48/230|
|Seventh Assembly||27 June 1980||18 August 1983||Leader of the Opposition (2)||37/112|
|Ninth Assembly||27 January 1989||30 January 1991||Chief Minister (3)||150/202|
|Tenth Assembly||26 April 1991||30 March 1996||MLA ||2/176 |
|Eleventh Assembly||13 May 1996||14 May 2001||Chief Minister (4)||173/182|
|Thirteenth Assembly||13 May 2006||14 May 2011||Chief Minister (5)||96/132|
|Fourteenth Assembly||16 May 2011||19 May 2016||MLA||23/124|
|Fifteenth Assembly||19 May 2016||Present||MLA||89/176|
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Chennai, 3 June: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and DMK President M Karunanidhi, who turned 84 today, will be conferred with the 'Friend of the Muslim Community' title by the Tamil Nadu Muslim Makkal Katchi.
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The Tamil Nadu Muslim Makkal Katchi has decided to confer 'Yaaraan-E-Millath (meaning friend of the Muslim community) title on Mr Karunanidhi to mark the occasion.
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C. N. Annadurai
|Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu
Title next held byM. G. Ramachandran
Title last held byJanaki Ramachandran
|Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu
Title next held byJ. Jayalalithaa
|Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu
|Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu