The last rites of KM Mani were conducted at his house and St Thomas Cathedral in Pala on Thursday.

Thousands pay last respects at funeral of Kerala veteran politician KM ManiFB /Achayan Pillerz of Vallichira
news Death Thursday, April 11, 2019 - 18:44

Thousands of people from across Kerala on Thursday flocked to the Karingozhakkal house in the municipal town of Pala in Kottayam district to see their ‘Mani Sir’ for one last time. The last rites of Kerala Congress (M) chief KM Mani, who passed away on Tuesday in Kochi, were held at his native town in Pala with state honours.

The Karingozhakkal house saw a continuous stream of visitors who kept coming to pay homage to KM Mani. In the midst of an overwhelming crowd of Mani’s supporters, the final rites started by 2pm at his house.

KM Mani's mortal remains being taken to St Thomas Cathedral

Long queues extended to about 300 meters from the house, with people turning up unmindful of the heat.

From Mani’s house, the mortal remains were taken to St Thomas Cathedral in Pala for burial. About 15 bishops participated in the funeral functions which were held in the Karingozhakkal house. Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, Cardinal Mar Baselios Cleemis Bava headed the funeral rites. The veteran leader was buried in his family tomb at the cathedral cemetery.

The mortal remains of the Kerala Congress (M) chief reached his native town in Pala on Thursday morning after an over 20-hour long procession which started from Lakeshore hospital in Kochi on Wednesday morning.

Scores of supporters lined the way as the procession was going through on Wednesday.

People following KM Mani's mortal remains being taken to church

KM Mani's body was kept at the historic Thirunakkara Maidan (ground) in Kottayam on Wednesday night before being brought to his house in Pala.

Many prominent personalities like retired Supreme Court judge Kurian Joseph were present.

Prominent political leaders of the Congress including AK Antony, Oommen Chandy, Ramesh Chennithala, PK Kunhalikutty, VM Sudheeran, Joseph Vazhakkan, MM Hassan, K Muraleedharan, VT Balram paid their last respects. CPI State secretary Kanam Rajendran and BJP leader K Surendran also came to pay their homage.

R Balakrishna Pillai, who had differences with Mani, said while paying tributes to him that he was a remarkable leader and administrator. “Everyone should have stayed together but it did not happen,” said Pillai.

Balakrishna Pillai and KM Mani were part of Kerala Congress initially when the party was formed. Later, KM Mani formed Kerala Congress (M) and Balakrishna Pillai formed Kerala Congress (B) party.

Malayalam actor Mammooty who attended the funeral told media that KM Mani was a dynamic leader. “Mani Sir was a leader who kept strong personal relations even outside politics. He used to contact me whenever I was around Pala for movie shootings,” Mammootty said.

Malayalam film actor Mammootty paying homage to KM Mani

KM Mani was under treatment for severe chest infection at Lakeshore hospital in Kochi for the past one week and passed away on Tuesday evening.