Sri MGR Year 100, 30th May, Tuesday
I have heard many accounts about people meeting MGR, and aftermath. What most of them said on the instant of seeing him is this.
1. When he/she sees MGR they raise their hands as a gesture of welcoming him.
2. They forget all their problems, and also they forget where they are.
3. Some kind of force field works on them, which makes them to move closer to MGR.
4. The eagerness to touch him arises.
5. Their happiest moment in their life.
All the above facts resemble something Godly. Most of them reading this blog could say that all the fans or followers in the world will behave like that. But what about others? Who are not his fans and who dislike MGR? What happen when they meet? As a rule the above listed should not happen right? No, you are wrong the above thing happened to them also.
From my experience I came to know what all they say about MGR is true. Even who disliked him say that MGR is like this and that and when their eyes falls on MGR they turn and behave like his followers and when MGR disappears from their view they become normal and start to say that he is like this and that again.
My experience happened when I was 11 years old, 17th May 1984, Thursday the time is 7.30 p.m. unforgettable day for me the day I saw MGR in person. First of all I want to mention that I was not a fan of MGR, like others of same age, I was a fan of Kamalhassan.
Tamil Nadu was having by-election for 4 constituencies, Anna Nagar, Uppilapuram, Mayiladuthurai and Thanjavur (DMK partys fort). ADMK contested in Anna Nagar, Uppilapuram and Mayiladuthurai and the Thanjavur was given to its ally Indira Congress. The election date was 20th May 1984 and results on 21st. MGR was then the Chief Minister, as part of the by-election he was expected to tour the Anna Nagar constituency on 17th May by 4 pm.
The announcement came two days before that MGR will pass through Arumbakkam via Poonamallee High Road now Periyar EVR High Road by 4 p.m. It is summer holidays and like others I was also looking forward to see him. My home is located near the High Road and we have let out some part of the house to a Clinic and a Barber shop. The owners of both shops are staunch DMK party supporters. Time is running on, it is now 7 pm, a 3 long hours of staring the road made me frustrated and lost interest in MGR and started to read a comic book on Phantom.
Slowly and slowly the crowd was increasing on both sides of the road. Now and then I popped my head out to see him. By 7.20 p.m. there was a roar (this sound is much more in decibels when compared to MGR appearing on screen) and I came out to see what's happening, the white van took a right turn and went to a Lane and disappeared. Some of the people left that he won't come back again. But most of them said that MGR never takes a prescribed route, he always changes the plan and that he was very conscious about the surroundings.
By this time two people was holding a very sick guy, entered the clinic he was wearing a shawl, trembling and had much difficulty to get on the stairs. As he was looking very sick he was allowed immediately to see the Doctor, while other patients wait.
By 7.30 p.m. the White Van was coming again on the High Road a small light is fixed on the top with loudspeaker on one side, the top of the Van had an opening so that MGR's half of the body can be seen clearly. First and final I had a glimpse of MGR, he was donned in White Shirt, Fur Cap and Dark Black Glass, his skin tone is Red, no Rose, no kind of Gold, no all combined and shining, I became ecstatic, I was showing a victory sign and jumping, MGR looked at me and smiled, when he passed me, then I looked around and all people had the same feeling. The sick man now has mingled with the crowd and he was shouting, long live MGR. And the Doctor who often ridicules MGR's rule was waving to MGR with a syringe in his left hand. Some of the crowd was trying to stop the van to have more glimpse of him.
The sight of MGR makes a chemical change and people, they act like an energized electron. This is a true incident and I witnessed it.
I have heard lot of stories where one gets a close encounter with MGR. In villages people who have touched MGR will not wash their hands for some days! And there are stories after the function attended by MGR the left over in the Soda bottle used by him was regarded as a venerable thing. The left over soda was mixed with water and distributed to all! The bottle gets a new life. And there is another legendary story that during an election MGR went to a village. The farms they possessed turned a very low harvesting that year, and when MGR came he was asked to walk on the farm believing when his feet touch the soil would bring them a good harvest. That became true the next year they had golden harvest. These things make me feel that MGR is a demi God for the people of Tamil Nadu.
N.B.: Of the four constituencies three was won by ADMK and allies and one Anna Nagar constituency was won by DMK.
This post is reproduced from srimgr.com, addition of images from my father's friend collection.