The Ram Janmabhoomi movement is the manifestation of the relentless pursuit and perseverance of leaders who kept everything at stake to ensure that a majestic Ram Mandir is built. When India celebrates Bhoomi Pujan on August 5, it will mark the conclusion of a long-standing struggle by generations of Hindus in rendering justice to Lord Ram in His own country. Despite political pressure and illustrious career at stake, one such man decided to forego everything to ensure that the dream of a magnificent Ram Mandir comes alive.
The man was Kandangalathil Karunakaran Nair, abbreviated as KK Nair. Born in Kerala on September 11, 1907, the erstwhile Indian Civil Service officer was the frontrunner in safeguarding the Fundamental right to worship of Hindus even before India became a Republic. His life began from the village of Kuttanad in Alappuzha in Kerala. After completing his education in the State, Nair went to England for higher studies and cleared the Indian Civil Service (ICS) exam at the age of 21. He was then posted as the Deputy Commissioner cum District Magistrate of Faizabad, the earlier name of Ayodhya, on June 1, 1949.
Demand for a Ram Mandir left Nehru irked
His endeavour in Ayodhya eventually became the highlight of his career. After receiving a letter from the State government of Uttar Pradesh to do a report on the Ram Janmabhoomi issue, Nair sent his assistant Guru Datt Singh to submit a report on the same. On October 10, 1949, Singh, in his report, recommended the construction of a majestic Ram temple at the site. Singh had visited the site and observed that both Hindus and Muslims performed their ceremonies, side by side.
He wrote, “Hindu public has put in this application with a view to erecting a decent and Vishal temple instead of the small one which exists at present. There is nothing on the way and permission can be given as the Hindu population is very keen to have a nice temple at the place where Bhagwan Ram Chandra Ji was born. The land where the temple is to be erected is of Nazul (government land)”.
KK Nair refused to bow down to Nehru
However, on the directions of an irked Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Govind Vallabh Pant tried to evict the Hindus from the Ram Mandir. However, the KK Nair refused to budge and decided not to implement the order. He highlighted that the Hindus were performing Puja at the site and forcing them to leave would stir riots. He also refused to remove the idols from the site. Nair was eventually suspended by Govind Vallabh Pant from his designation as the District Magistrate.
However, he moved the court against the then Congress government and secured a judgment in his favour. On being reinstated as an ICS officer yet again, Nair bid adieu to civil services. He took the decision in the wake of the growing resentment against Nehru. Nair refused to bow down to the ‘Aurangzebi diktat‘ of Nehru. His open defiance of the then Prime Minister and his firm resolve to ensure justice to the millions of Hindus earned him a place in the hearts of people. As a gesture of endearment, he was called as ‘Nair Sahab’ by people.
KK Nair strives for Ram Mandir politically
Following his resignation from ICS, he started practising as a lawyer in the Allahabad High Court. To strive for the cause of building a Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, KK Nair and his family joined the Jan Sangh. His wife Shakuntala Nair contested elections and became a member of the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly in 1952.
Both Nair and his wife eventually became the members of the Lok Sabha in 1962. Interestingly, their driver was also elected as a member of the Legislative Assembly of Uttar Pradesh. Reportedly, Nair and his wife were arrested during the dark days of the National emergency that was proclaimed by President Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed on the behest of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
KK Nair continues to inspire a generation of Hindus
KK Nair passed away on September 7, 1977. He dedicated his life to Jan Sangh and the cause of Ram Mandir. Although he was a celebrated figure in the state of Uttar Pradesh, he received a lot of recognition in his home state of Kerala. Reportedly, the nationalists in the state of Kerala have decided to build a memorial on the land donated by Vishva Hindu Parishad in his village. A Trust by the name of KK Nair Memorial Charitable Trust has also been set up. Besides welfare activities, the trust provides training for civil service aspirants and scholarships for students.
Ram Janmabhoomi movement spearheaded by KK Nair was later continued by tall leaders like of LK Advani, Ashok Kumar, Kalyan Singh, Vinay Katiyar, and Uma Bharti. Following the historic judgment by the supreme court in 2019, a trust has been constituted to build the Majestic Ram Mandir at the same site for which Nair espoused his career. Although KK Nair is no more in this mortal world, yet his contribution to the movement will be cherished for years to come.