Special Correspondent

Ministers pay homage to 94 victims

KUMBAKONAM: A memorial for the 94 children, who perished in a fire at Krishna School here in 2004, will come up at Palakarai a cost of Rs. 60 lakh.

Co-operation Minister Ko. Si. Mani and Union Minister for Panchayati Raj, Sports and Youth Welfare Mani Shankar Aiyar laid the foundation on Monday, the third anniversary of the tragedy, after paying floral tribute to the photographs of the victims kept at the school.

Parents of the children who died and 18 injured children and leaders of political parties also paid homage.

Copper monument

The 14,000-sq. foot memorial will have a copper monument depicting the events of the fateful day and a flame at the centre.

The Kumbakonam municipality will build the octagonal structure. The monument has been sculpted by lecturers and students of the Government Arts and Crafts College here.

The College joined hands with the Chennai Fine Arts College for the design.

According to Municipal Commissioner V.P. Dandapani, a children’s centre will be set up as part of the memorial. The Rs. 35-lakh centre will have a computer centre, video and audio library, children’s park, library, meditation hall and meeting hall.

Sponsors can contribute for the construction of the children’s activities centre.

Collector (in-charge) N. Muthukaruppan, Mayiladuthurai MLA Rajkumar and Kumbakonam Municipal Chairman S. P. Thamizhazhagan took part in the function.