'Six out of the 14 films ‘MKT' Bhagavathar had acted were box-office hits, with one of the films 'Haridas' running continuously for three Deepavalis'

The District Welfare Committee has allotted space on its grounds for installing a statue of M. K. Thiyagaraja Bhagavathar, said K. N. Nehru, State Transport Minister.

Speaking at the birth centenary celebrations of the late ‘MKT' Bhagavathar, organised by the department of Information and Public Relations here on Wednesday, Mr. Nehru said that the sprawling site together with the Thiyagaraja Bhagavathar Mandram, a cinema-hall, belonged to District Welfare Committee, a unique body founded by the late K. A. P. Viswanatham decades ago.

The committee had granted permission for setting up the statue, he said and expressed the hope that the Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi would take immediate steps for setting up the statue.

Parithi Ilamvazhuthi, State Information Minister, said the late Thiyagaraja Bhagavathar's voice mesmerised every one, cutting across age-groups . Even the late Periyar mobilised a donation of Rs.50,000 for meeting the advocates fee for a case involving the late Bhagavathar.

N. Selvaraj, state Forest Minister, said that the late Bhagavathar was a trend-setter in the Tamil film industry. The decade between 1934 and 1944 which saw the late Bhagavathar climb the ladder of fame, also brought glory to the film industry. Six out of the 14 films he had acted were box-office hits, with one of the films 'Haridas' running continuously for three Deepavalis.

S. Ve. Shekar, film actor and MLA, traced the gift to the Tamil film music through a rare combination of the late Bhagavathar's voice and extraordinary support by the late G. Ramanathan, noted music director of yesteryear. Mr. Shekar said MKT was a symbol of integration of all communities, a great patriot and humanitarian.

Kumari Muthu, comedian, said Tamil drama and music got a renaissance through the late Bhagavathar's mellifluous voice. R. Sivakumar secretary to Tamil Culture, Information and Public Relations, said that the late Bhagavathar opened up new vistas in music and his service to Tamil music was unparalleled.

K. R. Balachandra Ganesan, the late Bhagavathar's son-in-law, pleaded for constructing a 'manimandapam' in memory of the late Bhagavathar. He also wanted Kodambakkam, to be renamed as Bhagavathar nagar. The government music institutions should be christened after the late MKT. Visu. Sivakumar, president, All India Handicrafts Workers Kazhagam and K.V. Selvam, member of the state Goldsmiths Welfare Board offered felicitations. Mr. Nehru and Mr.Ilamvazhuthi honoured family members of the late MKT with a shawl.

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