//Kannagi statue to return to beach, courtesy Karunanidhi

Kannagi statue to return to beach, courtesy Karunanidhi

15 May 2006 # IANS

Chennai: The statue of Kannagi, a symbol of Tamil pride, is set to return to the popular Marina Beach of Chennai as Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi Monday visited the Chennai Museum to inspect the art work that was displaced by his predecessor J. Jayalalitha.

The statue was being given a facelift before being returned to the beachfront, as promised by the DMK party.

Kannagi is a legendary figure who in her wrath burned down the temple town of Madurai for the wrong done by a king.

The statue was installed in 1967 on the occasion of a World Tamil Conference here, after the DMK had stormed to power for the first time in the state. C Annadurai was then chief minister and Karunanidhi minister for public works.

Jayalalitha, however, did not like the statue pointing a finger at the city and had it removed when she became chief minister in 2001.

Kannagi was banished to the Chennai museum in Egmore amid protests from the DMK.

After coming to power in the May 8 assembly polls, one of Karunanidhi's first announcements was that the Kannagi statue will be reinstalled on the Marina beach.

In a few days, Kannagi will once again look upon the city from its most popular gathering point, from a high stone pedestal, as she had done for years.