Governor M.O.H. Farook maintained cordial relations with his
opponents and groomed many political leaders, Congress leaders in
his home state of Puducherry said Friday, a day after his death.
"He was a very learned politician and trained many in politics,
including me. Puducherry politics stabilised after his entry. He
was friendly with everybody," V. Vaithilingam, a former chief
minister of Puducherry, told IANS over phone.
"Farook was a versatile politician and had held several important
posts like speaker and chief minister of Puducherry at a very
young age. He used to maintain cordial relations with everybody,
including his political rivals, a rare quality," E. Valsaraj,
former home minister of Puducherry, told IANS over phone.
Suffering from multiple myeloma - cancer of plasma cells -
75-year-old Farook passed away at the Apollo Hospital in Teynampet
here around around 9.20 p.m. Thursday.
His body was taken to Puducherry at night and is being kept at his
residence for people to pay their last respects. The funeral is
scheduled for Friday evening.
Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy cancelled his engagements and
went to Puducherry to pay his last respects to Farook.
Kerala has declared a holiday for all state government offices,
and central government offices in the state capital will not
function either. Puducherry also declared a government holiday
Farook, also a former union minister, was sworn in as Kerala
governor Sep 8 last year. Born in Karaikal, Puducherry, he was a
graduate in economics, and was a member of the Puducherry assembly
between 1964 and 1991. He was twice the speaker of the assembly.
Between March-December 1990, he was the leader of opposition.
Thrice elected to the Lok Sabha from Puducherry in 1991, 1996 and
1999, he served as a minister of state for civil aviation and
tourism from June 1991 to December 1992 in the P.V. Narasimha Rao
In 2004, he was appointed the Indian ambassador to Saudi Arabia
and held that post till December 2009.
Between January 2010 and September 2011, he was governor of
In his younger days, Farook had participated in the struggle for
liberation of Puducherry when it was a French colony.
He also took part in the struggle for an independent Puducherry
when the late Morarji Desai was prime minister between 1977-79.
Farook was arrested and lodged in jails in Puducherry and Tamil
Farook was married to S.A. Kadhija Nachiyal in 1960 and they had
one son and two daughters. He was a widower at the time of his