Poet Ayyappan gets a grand state funeral

Thiruvananthapuram: People’s poet A. Ayyappan lived a bohemian life – he lived and died on the streets. But ironically, he was given a grand state funeral here Tuesday and was bid farewell by leading lights of Kerala politics and society.

The list of people who came to pay their respects included Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan, leader of opposition Oommen Chandy, state Congress chief Ramesh Chennithala and Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan apart from several other senior politicians.

Ayyappan, 61, was considered as the last remaining icon of anarchism in the state.He was known for his touching poems and his bohemian lifestyle and his creativity was at its best when he was in an intoxicated state.

Ayyappan was knocked down by a vehicle Thursday while he was headed to Chennai to receive the Kumaran Asan Puraskaram, one of the highest literary awards in Malayalam literature, for the year 2010.

According to the police, the poet was brought to the General Hospital Thursday night after he was found unconscious near the Thiruvananthapuram railway station.He passed away late in the night but his identity remained unknown to police and hospital authorities.

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