Thursday, October 4, 2012
The line of statues along the Marina has Ilango Adigal at the northern end (most articles seem to miss that one out) and this one at the other. It is probably more appropriate to say that it starts with this one of K. Kamaraj, who is one of the few politicians to have given up a ministerial position - that of Chief Minister, no less - to go back to his party's organisational hierarchy. The line starts here, because the road along the beach is named Kamarajar Salai - and he has to be at the head of it.
He was 72 when he died, and kind of picked the wrong day for it. There is no way anyone else can overshadow Gandhiji. Lal Bahadur Shastri was also born on October 2, but he does not even get a token mention these days. Maybe that way, Kamaraj is a little better off. His statue here being quite close to that of the Mahatma helps the high-and-mighty to spare a garland for him, as well, to remember him on the anniversary of his passing away.
I have been wondering: the road along the beach has been around for a long time. What was it called before being named after this great leader? Does anyone know?