King Maker Kamaraj

Here we listed out some interesting facts about King Maker Kamaraj, with his Biography, Profile, Facts, Timeline, Awards, Achievement, etc.,

Born: 15 July 1903
Birth Place: Virudhunagar, Madras, India
Nationality: India
Died: 2 October 1975 (aged 72)
Nationality: Indian
Known as: King Maker
Awards: Bharat Ratna (1976)

  • Kumaraswamy Kamaraj is a rare illustration of what a boy of poor means can achieve in life through patience, hard work and dedication.
  • The great leader who had tremendous influence on the masses as well as political stalwarts, and who rose from the low Nadar caste to become the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.
  • Kumaraswamy Kamaraj was born on July 15, 1903 at Virudhunagar, Ramanathapuram district in Tamilnadu to Kumaraswamy Nadar, a coconut merchant, and Sivakami Ammal.
  • The parents named their first born ‘Kamakshi’ after their family goddess but affectionately called him ‘Raju’ Soon both the names were combined and the boy came to be called Kamaraj.
  • At the age of five Kamaraj was put in the Nadar Vidyalaya High School at Virudhunagar. Within  a year, however,  he lost his father.
  • His father’s death soon after the death of Kamaraj’s grandfather came as a rude shock to the entire family.
  • His mother, Sivakami Ammal, brought up the children with great difficulty and Kamaraj experienced poverty for the first time in his life.
  • The harsh relatives of life taught him more than what any school could have  taught him.  At the tended age of 12 he stared working in his uncle, Kurupai Nadar’s cloth shop.
  • Though Kamaraj did not receive any formal education, he gave education top priority when he was Chief Minister of Tamilnadu in 1954 and did a lot to several poor children to get free education.
  • Kamaraj, though uneducated, was endowed with a natural intelligence and an intuitive knowledge of human nature. He could understand people and their problems quickly and would solve manymatters accurately.  He thus came to be called “Padikkatha Methai”, the unlettered genius.
  • He participated in the Vaikom Satyagraha of the Congress protesting against the atrocities of caste Hindus on Harijans.
  • He was called home and it was suggested that he should be married, Kamaraj did not relent, he decided he would never get married, instead he would devote his life to the nation.
  • The massacre of Jallianwala Bagh in 1919 left a deep impact on the young Kamaraj and he decided on the future course of his life. He joined the freedom movement, lock, stock and barrel.
  • At 16, he became a full time Congress Worker. He started organizing fund raising rallies for the Congress.  At the age of 20 Kamaraj met S. Satyamurth, one of the Congress leaders who later proved to be his political Guru.
  • Kamaraj started propaganda for khadi and prohibition. In April 1930 he participated in  the ‘Salt Satyagraha’ and was imprisoned for two years.
  • He took active part in the ‘Individual Satyagraha’ and ‘Quit India’ movement and was imprisoned several times.
  • In 1932, Kamaraj was elected to the Madras Legislative Assembly, unopposed. In 1936, Satyamurthy became the President of the Provicial Congress and he made Kamaraj the General Secretary.
  • One of the epithets Kamaraj earned during his political life was that of ‘King Maker’. The quick changes of three chief Ministers of Tamilnadu within  a span of four years, from 1946 to 1950, only proved his influence in the Party.
  • As long as he was alive “Kamaraj was Congress and Congress was Kamaraj”. Only those who had his blessings could win elections to any post, either in the Party or in the legislature.
  • Kamaraj was an ardent follower of Mahatma Gandhi and the news of his assassination left him stunned.  Tears flowed down the face which otherwise remained calm and expressionless, for Kamaraj never exhibited his emotions.
  • After Mahatma Gandhi, Kamaraj accepted the leadership of Jawaharlal Nehru and spared no effort to strengthen his Government.
  • On April 13, 1954 Kamaraj became Chief Minister of Madras. During his time, Madras State was renamed ‘Tamilnadu’.
  • During his tenure as Chief Minister, Kamaraj brought about several changes and reforms in Tamilnadu.
  • He gave top priority to education. New schools were opened and the existing ones were provided with better facilities like buildings, libraries and laboratories.
  • He made education compulsory and introduced free education upto matriculation in a phased manner.
  • He gave special attention to rural electrification. On the Agricultural front, a number of irrigation schemes were executed in a short time.
  • He encouraged the Government to build new industries and made Tamilnadu one of the most socially and economically developed states of India.
  • He advised Jawaharlal Nehru that in the interest of the country all the senior Congress Leaders should resign from their Ministrial posts and come together to strengthen the Congress Party again. He himself resigned from the post of Chief Minister.  This plan was known as the ‘Kamaraj Plan’.
  • Six Chief Ministers of different States and six Central Cabinet Ministers including Morarji Desai, Lal Bahadur Shastri, Jagjivan Ram and S.K. Patil resigned voluntarily from their posts in the Central Cabinet.
  • Karmaraj was appointed President of the All India Congress Party. He remained in this post for long and guided the nation in troubled times.
  • Kamaraj’s low social origins contributed to his success in bringing low caste and untouchable voters to vote in favour of the Congress.
  • He received invitation from several countries, although he has no post of power. He went on a tour to USSR, East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria and Yugoslavia and met world leaders.  Before becoming the Chief Minister, he had also visited Sri Lanka and Malaysia.
  • Kamaraj’s fears that the Congress was losing ground came true in the fourth General elections held in 1967. Congress lost to DMK (Dravid Munnetra Kazagam).
  • Even Kamaraj, for the first time, lost his individual election in his native place. Two years later, however, he won his parliamentary seat in a by-election from Nagarcoil.
  • All his life Kamaraj strived for the development of his country and the betterment of his countrymen. He was a staunch Gandhian and in North India, people affectionately referred to him as the “Kala Gandhi”.
  • What a co-incidence that  this “last heir to Gandhi” should pass away quietly on October 2, 1975, the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.
  • Kamaraj never confined himself to Tamilnadu; he always had a national outlook. On January 17, 1976, he was posthumously conferred the “Bharat Ratna”, the highest national award  of India.

King Maker Kamaraj Biography

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