PUDUCHERRY: Former Puducherry Chief Minister and veteran DMK leader RV Janakiraman died in the early hours on Monday at a private hospital after a prolonged illness. He was 79 and survived by his two wives and five children. Of the four sons and a daughter, two sons died due to illness earlier. Elected from Nellithoppe assembly constituency on the DMK ticket for five times, Janakiraman served as the Chief Minister of Puducherry from May 26, 1996, to March 18, 2000, heading the DMK-TMC-CPI government in the UT.
He also served as leader of opposition, Minister for PWD and DMK whip in the Assembly. He started his career as a driver to the former DMK president M Karunanidhi and then went on to become bus operator. Subsequently, he joined DMK and rose to be the convenor of the party.
His body will be kept at his Ambur saalai residence till 7 AM on Tuesday for public homage and will be taken to Alathur, his hometown near Tindivanam for funeral at 10 am on Tuesday. The administration has announced state mourning for three days in view of the demise of Janakiraman.
According to a release, there will be no official entertainment from June 10 to 12 and the national flag will fly half mast. It was also decided to extend full state honour and funeral to the leader.
Lt Governor Kiran Bedi condoled the death while Chief Minister V Narayanasamy and other leaders of the DMK, Congress and various other parties paid their last respects.
Leaders condole death
Politicians have condoled the demise of Janakiraman. DMK president MK Stalin said, ”Janakiraman was a man of simplicity. He has brought various development projects to the union territory.” PMK founder Dr S Ramadoss, and MDMK general secretary Vaiko also condoled the veteran leader’s demise.