State pays last respects to Uthradom Thirunal

Our Bureau Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on December 16, 2013

Uthradom Thirunal Marthanda Varma, head of the Travancore royal family, was honoured with a State funeral within the precincts of the Kowdiar Palace here on Monday evening.

Titular Maharaja of Travancore and chairman of the trust running the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple, the 91-year-old passed away early in the morning at a private hospital here.

He is survived by a son and a daughter.

The State government declared Monday a public holiday as a mark of respect to the departed.

Hundreds of people from different walks of life filed past his body that lay in state at the Levi hall in the city until afternoon.

Marthanda Varma was chief patron of many charitable institutions and religious and cultural organisations.

He became head of the royal family after elder brother Sree Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, the last princely ruler of Travancore, passed away in 1991.

An acclaimed Sanskrit scholar, Marthanda Varma travelled around the world, including England where he pursued studies. He was also an avid photographer.

His friends’ list featured the likes of King Mahendra and Birendra of Nepal; the Shah of Persia; and Nikita Khrushchev.

Published on December 16, 2013

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