Monday, Dec 22, 2003
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By Our Special Correspondent
The Congress leader, M.V. Rajashekaran, MP, being felicitated in Bangalore on Sunday. Seen are (from left) the Legislative Council Chairman, B.L. Shankar, the Congress leader, Arjun Singh, the Chief Minister, S.M. Krishna, the Janata Dal (S) leader, P.G.R. Sindhia, MLA, Shivakumar Swamiji of Siddaganga Math, the BJP leader, Ramachandre Gowda, and the former Railway Minister, C.K. Jaffer Sharief, MP. Photo: K. Gopinathan
Led by the Chief Minister, S.M. Krishna, who presided over the four-hour-long function, a host of leaders of major political parties, including the former Union Minister, Arjun Singh, the AICC General Secretary in charge of Karnataka, Vayalar Ravi, and the KPCC President, B. Janardhana Poojary, commended Mr. Rajashekaran for his honesty and integrity and his commitment to the cause of rural development.
Mr. Krishna, recalling his association with Mr. Rajashekaran, who had accepted good and bad times in politics with equanimity, paid tribute to him saying he was one of the earliest to think of the concept of non-governmental organisation and set up the Asian Institute of Rural Development.
Endorsing the views of Mr. Rajashekaran, Mr. Krishna said rural areas and farmers must receive adequate attention as the global competition, following the policy of globalisation, was bound to continue in farm and food sectors.
Replying to the felicitations, Mr. Rajashekaran regretted the neglect of rural areas and wanted policy-makers and administrators to remedy the situation.
He also expressed concern at the falling values in public life and said it was not proper to take comfort in the fact that the situation was the same in other parts of the world.
Inaugurating the function, Mr. Arjun Singh spoke of the qualities of head and heart of Mr. Rajashekaran and commended his humility, simplicity, and commitment.
Mr. Ravi, who released "Shivachaitanya", a commemorative volume commended the Gandhian way of thinking and living of Mr. Rajashekaran. Mr. Poojary, complimenting Mr. Rajashekaran, said his was an example to show that ultimately people were recognised by their services.
The Chairman of the Legislative Council, B.L. Shankar, who released two felicitation volumes, said the close mass contact Mr. Rajashekaran maintained though he was not in power, spoke of his rare personality.
The Minister for Forests, K.H. Ranganath, said Mr. Rajasehkaran was soft-spoken but was fearless, and in honouring him, one was honouring oneself.
Another Congress leader, C.K. Jaffer Sharief, MP, said Mr. Rajashekaran was an "Ajatashatru" who had achieved the rare distinction of being member of all the legislative bodies.
The Janata Dal (S) leader, P.G.R. Sindhia, said Mr. Rajashekaran besides maintaining his simplicity, had never used his high connection for furthering his interests. The BJP leader, Ramachandre Gowda, described him as a true democrat. While the AIPJD leader, M.P. Prakash, said Mr. Rajashekaran was a decent politician, the former Minister, V.S. Krishna Iyer, said he was not a person but a force.
Satyanarayan, former AICC General Secretary, wishing Mr. Rajashekaran well wanted him to continue his service to society.
Shivakumara Swamiji of Siddaganga Math wished Mr. Rajashekaran well. D. Javare Gowda, former Vice-Chancellor of Mysore University, who edited the commemorative volumes, was among the speakers. Haranahalli Ramaswamy, chairman of the reception committee, welcomed the chief guests.
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