Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik expresses grief over death of M Karunanidhi

#JustIn: Kaliagnar M. Karunanidhi Passes Away At 94

"With deep anguish, we announce the demise of our beloved Kalaignar".

A medical bulletin released by the Kauvery Hospital at 6.30 pm on Monday said there has been a decline in the medical condition of Karunanidhi.

Mr Karunanidhi was admitted to Kauvery Hospital on July 28 after suffering a drop in his blood pressure and a urinary tract infection. A large number of DMK supporters thronged the hospital.

His popularity rivalled that of J. Jayalalithaa, another powerful leader from Tamil Nadu whose death sparked a huge outpouring of grief.

Following the death of Annadurai, Karunanidhi, with the help of Tamil cinema legend MG Ramachandran aka MGR became Chief Minister.

Born on June 3, 1924, to Muthuvel and Anjugam, at Thirukuvalai in Tiruvarur, around 320 kilometres from Chennai, he was named Dakshinamurthy, which he later changed to Karunanidhi.

Karunanidhi, the man who shaped and controlled the political narrative of Tamil Nadu, no matter in power or out of it for several decades, died on Tuesday. He contested - and won - 13 elections in the state. Alagiri was a Union minister during the UPA government, while Stalin is now the treasurer of DMK and has been declared Karunanidhi's successor in the party.

Describing the late stalwart as a "mass leader", the CM said, "He was an undaunted political fighter, mass leader who struggled for socio-economic development of marginalised sections of society in Tamil Nadu".

He became the Dravida Munnetra Kazagham treasurer in 1961 and Deputy Leader of Opposition in the state assembly in the year 1962.

Karunanidhi, a school dropout, became involved in politics at a young age, spearheading the DMK which was allied for many years to the Gandhi dynasty's Congress party.

Riding on an anti-incumbency wave, Karunanidhi became Chief Minister for the fourth time in 1996. DMK cadres turned violent after the state government led by AIADMK said no to allot the land for at the Marina Beach.

He is survived by four sons and two daughters.

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