Statues of Tagore, Kalam, others to be erected in Chennai

Government announces a welfare board for journalists, financial aid for young journalists to study

Minister for Information and Publicity M.P. Swaminathan announced on Tuesday that statues of Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and former Finance Minister V.R. Nedunchezhian would come up in Chennai.

The statue of Tagore will come up on the campus of Queen Mary’s College, of Kalam in Anna Univerity and that of Nedunchezhian in front of the State guest house in Chepauk.

Replying to the debate on the demand for grants for his Department, the Minister said statues of Veerapandiya Kattabomman and Marudu Brothers would be erected on the campus of Gandhi Mandapam in Guindy.

He said a statue of Anjalai Ammal, described as the “Jhansi Rani of south India” by Mahatma Gandhi, will be installed in Cuddalore. A statue of linguistic martyr Keezhapazhuvur Chinnasamy will come up in Keezhapazhuvur.

Mr. Swaminathan said the government would also install a statue of social reformer Moovalur Ramamirtham Ammaiyar in Mayiladuthurai. A statue of Muthulakshmi Reddy will be erected in Pudukottai, and that of Mu. Varadharajan in Ranipet.

He said the government would create an audio-visual exhibition to commemorate freedom fighters on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of Indpendence, at the Panajalamkurichi Fort. The memorial of Rajaji, Kamaraj and M. Bhaktavatsalam in Gandhi Mandapam will be renovated at a cost of ₹3.38 crore.

Mr. Swaminathan also announced statues, memorials and halls to commemorate freedom fighters from the Kongu region.

Besides announcing a welfare board for journalists, he said the amount being given to families of journalists in case of their death, would be increased to ₹5 lakh from ₹3 lakh.

The government will also offer financial assistance to young journalists to join institutions such as the Indian Institute of Mass Communication and the Asian College of Journalism.

A journalist highlighting issues of the subaltern and social development will be awarded the Kalaignar Ezhuthukol Prize. It will include ₹5 lakh and a certificate.

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