The CPI(ML) pays its respects to M Karunanidhi, towering leader of Tamil Nadu’s Dravidian movement and leader of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.

Karunanidhi was a prolific writer in the Tamil language: his honorific ‘Kalaignar’ reflected his role as a writer and artist. He left an indelible mark on the political landscape of Tamil Nadu and India by championing social justice, federalism and the rights of states, playing his part in opposing the Emergency, as well as taking up the cause of Tamil language and culture against attempts to impose the hegemony of Hindi and North India.

Karunanidhi’s stints as Chief Minister, and his party’s sharing of power at the Centre with the NDA even after the Gujarat 2002 massacre, and with the Congress-led UPA, of course attracted a deserved share of criticism on many counts.

His demise marks the passing of an era in Tamil Nadu’s politics.

We stand with the people of Tamil Nadu in bidding respectful farewell to M Karunanidhi.