Statues Of Trivandrum: T M Varghese
Located at Kesavadasapuram Junction | By Mukesh Venu
On Sep 11, 2012

 Yentha’s series on historical personalities - those who now live as 'lifeless' statues in various parts of the capital city. Here comes the thirteenth in the series.


 T M Varghese - April 22, 1886 – December 31, 1961





Statue of T M Varghese at Kesavadasapuram junction 


T M Varghese Thandedath was an inspirational leader and freedom fighter, and was one of the arch rivals of Sir C P Ramaswami Iyer. Born in a Mar Thoma Syrian Christian family, T M Varghese entered politics as one of the representatives of the Christian communities. The new legislature system introduced in Travancore by Chithira Tirunal Balarama Varma on 21 October 1932 did not adequately represent the Ezhava, Christian and Muslim communities, although these communities made the greatest contributions in helping the state grow economically. In response, the leaders of the three communities met at LMS Hall on January 25, 1933 and formed the Joint Political Party with T M Varghese as one of its prominent leaders.


In 1935, there was a general meeting of the All Kerala Christian Union held at Kozhencherry from May 9 to 11. On the last day there was a meeting of the Joint Political Party and C Kesavan, one of the party's leaders and colleague of T M Varghese lashed out against C P Ramaswami Iyer, who was the advisor to the Maharajah at that time. He called C P a pest and stated that 'the country will go to the dogs unless this man leaves.' On 7 June 1935, C Kesavan was arrested and T M Varghese was one of the three lawyers who appeared to defend him. T M Varghese's rivalry with C P Ramaswami Iyer began here.


On 1936, after relentless pressure from the Joint Political Party, a new constitution was promulgated and elections to the Travancore State Assembly were held during April - May 1937. T M Varghese won the election as a candidate from the Joint Political Party and became the Deputy President of the Sree Moolam Assembly, which was the highest position attainable through open elections. C Kesavan was released in the same year. This infuriated Dewan C P Ramaswami Iyer, who had a lot to do with controlling the office of the president of the assembly. A no-confidence motion was moved against the Deputy President. T M Varghese lost the voting that ensued and lost his post as the Deputy President.


In February 1938, he put forward the point of responsible Government for discussion in the assembly. He argued about the need of a Dewan between the people of the state and their Maharajah. The motion was supported by many, including Pattom Thanupillai in the assembly, but was rejected by the Dewan. The Travancore State Congress was formed later that month. The Dewan did all he could to suppress the movement against him. After a nine year struggle, when T M Varghese had to spend a considerable amount of his wealth for sustaining the Travancore State Congress, on July 30, 1947, Travancore decided to join the Indian Union. India became independent on August 15, 1947 and C P Ramaswami Iyer resigned as Dewan on August 19, 1947. On September 4, 1947 the Government issued the proclamation for 'responsible government'.


In 1949 TM Varghese became the Speaker of the newly formed Travancore – Cochin State. In 1952 he won the elections from Ranni and became the Home Minister, a post he occupied till 1954. In 1957, he retired from politics. He died on December 1, 1961.


Statue unveiled by R Venkataraman, former President of India, on May 5, 2000.



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Statues Of Trivandrum: Pattom A Thanupillai

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Statues Of Trivandrum: A R Rajaraja Varma

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Statues Of Trivandrum: C Kesavan


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