Wednesday, Dec 18, 2002
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This Day That Age
The last rites for the late Potti Sriramulu were conducted at Choolai in Madras. The cortege started from the residence of Mr. Buhisu Sambamurti in Mylapore and reached the Vysya Crematorium after five hours. Young men in the procession shouted slogans demanding that Andhra Ministers in the Madras Cabinet and Members in the Legislature resign. Before the body of Mr. Sriramulu was consigned to the flames, a funeral oration was delivered by Andhra Kesari, Mr. T. Prakasam. Mr. Prakasam said that Sriramulu had made history by fasting unto death for a noble public cause. A few days earlier he had met the fasting man who had asked him, "Is there still a place for truth in this world?" But, Sriramulu stuck to his principles and ideals, showing tremendous spiritual strength. He scrupulously adhered to Gandhian ways and faced his death courageously. He laid down his life convinced that it would bring good to millions of others. Mr. Praksam hoped that after Sriramulu's supreme sacrifice, the Andhras would stand united and follow in the footsteps of the great departed soul to achieve what he had fasted grimly and died nobly for.
A PTI report from New Delhi said that the Government of India would very soon announce the appointment of a high judicial functionary, either a Judge of the Supreme Court or a Senior Judge of a High Court, to proceed to Madras and submit a report within thirty days on positive steps to be taken to create a separate State for Andhra.
The Union Cabinet was likely to be convened within a day or two to consider the matter. Dr. S. Radhakrishnan told the Council of States that the Prime Minister had taken steps in regard to the formation of an Andhra Province out of the undisputed Telugu areas. The Prime Minister himself told the House of People that "some steps would be taken fairly soon." Government was to take advice on the specific steps to be taken and on the terms of reference for a Boundary Commission, or any other body to be appointed to straighten out matters and bring into existence a separate Andhra State soon. Prime Minister, Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru, was already in touch with the Madras Chief Minister, C. Rajagopalachari, on this matter.
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