Today is the 80th birthday of George Fernandes. He is neither a fallen angel nor a forgotten leader. Giant killer is combating a killing disease that keeps him away from the political arena. Personally I and my sister’s two daughters Kanimozhi and Kayalvizhi used to greet him on New Year’s Day and on his birthday. Today is the 21st birthday of Kanimozhi. In our house we celebrate George Fernandes, Kalaignar and our Kanimozhi’s birthday. I remember how the printers of the book George Fernandes speaks were paid their dues. After becoming Union Defence Minister in NDA government’s first innings, we all in the National Executive bought copies in bulk to clear the printer’s dues, which demonstrates his honesty.
Economic Times wrote: “This book is a collection of the selected writings and speeches of one of the most dynamic, articulate and versatile political practitioners of our country. They mirror George Fernandes’ unmatched passion, analytical acumen, commitment to democratic socialism and fearless espousal of the cause of the poor and the downtrodden. These are reflections of one, who has never ceased trying to influence the course of events, notwithstanding the setbacks alternating with the success of his efforts. The collection provides an incisive commentary on the various social, economic, and political issues spanning the past 25 years” comments Economic Times.
Our friendship of 35 years witnessed George Fernandes in writing and speeches praising me for my political struggles, which shows his magnanimity. Me a tiny ant that giant recognizes comparing to the stalwarts of world socialist movement with whom he rubbed shoulders. I must mention what George Fernandes wrote on Swedish leader Olof Palme: “No man in recent years campaigned relentlessly against war and for peace, against nuclear weapons and for global disarmament as Olof Palme. And unlike government leaders of countries who sign declarations calling for global peace while they themselves continue to acquire and perfect weapons of war and at the same time practice violence against their own people, Palme’s crusade for peace and a weapon free world was rooted in his deep conviction that only a nation at peace with itself could be at peace with the world.”
George Fernandes had high regard for octogenarian Dr.Kalaignar M.Karunanithi, and on many occasions he had written to me on this, and those views may be in private correspondence. But no political leader of North India had defended DMK, like George Fernandes; to cite proof you must recollect what he wrote in Indian Express [Chennai] of January 16 of 1989. On his behalf I must extend 87th birthday greetings to Dr.Kalaignar M.Karunanithi on this day.
The legacy of George Fernandes will live in history and his spirit will activate every rebel for social causes across the globe, and on behalf of the rebels fighting for people’s causes let me greet Comrade George Saab. Long Live George Saab.
N.Nandhivarman General Secretary Dravida Peravai