Thousands mourn as revered veteran Tamil Nadu leader Karunanidhi dies


However the latest statement from the Tamil Nadu Government has denied the request of the DMK leader's family which was also his dying wish.

"Despite the best possible efforts by our team of doctors and nurses to resuscitate him, he failed to respond", said a press release by Dr Aravindan Selvaraj, Executive Director of Kauvery Hospital. The 2006 Assembly elections saw Karunanidhi without an independent majority for his DMK but the master tactician still managed to form a single party government ensuring that his allies ended up giving only outside support but not getting a share in power.

Private bus operators made a decision to stop their services to and from Chennai till Wednesday evening as large number of passengers cancelled their tickets as a precautionary measure, said an office-bearer of All Omni Bus Operators Association.

The 94-year-old five-time Tamil Nadu chief minister had been admitted to a hospital in Chennai on July 28 following a dip in blood pressure. Karunanidhi had been suffering from various ailments since October 2016.

It wouldn't be until 1989, two years after MGR's death that Karunanidhi would step back into the Chief Minister's chair.

M. Karunanidhi, Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu and chief of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) party, casts his vote at a polling station in Chennai April 13, 2011.

Mr Karunanidhi was among the proponents of the Dravidian movement, which defines Tamil Nadu politics and espouses rationalism, atheism and challenged the dominance of the upper caste Brahmins.

Karunanidhi, whose original name was Dakshinamurthy, was born in Thirukkuvalai village in Nagapattinam district.

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The Tamil word can be translated into "scholar of arts".

A high school dropout, Mr Karunanidhi got involved in social and political work at an early age.

June 1991: Quits Harbour Assembly seat, owning moral responsibility for DMK's defeat in the General elections that year.

He was elected to the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly 12 times.

Karunanidhi was chief minister of Tamil Nadu five times and successfully contested 12 state elections, building legions of supporters on the way.

His death comes less than two years after that of his bitter rival, actress-turned politician J Jayalalithaa, leaving a political void in the state.

A regional party leader becoming indispensable in the national political sphere was something remarkable, said Senthilnathan.

January 31, 1976: DMK government dismissed after the Emergency.