YB Mano, the State Assemblyman for Kota Alam Shah, was surprised to see many of his friends there. It showed on his face – and he certainly seemed touched. I have known Mano for many years as a cheerful, soft spoken, helpful and generally quiet guy (hence my surprise when he went into politics!). When his wife kindly invited me to the birthday dinner, I gladly accepted. It has been a habit every year for me to call his kids or the reverse to wish each other happy birthday because we share the same date! So when Mano was in detention under ISA, his kids were uppermost in my mind.
He was asked to say a few words. He thanked everyone present and recounted his experience in Kamunting detention camp. He said he was grateful to be able to celebrate his birthday with family and friends - as every citizen should be able to.
Mano cutting the birthday cake, flanked by his wife Puspha, daughter, Shivaranjini (12)and sons, Hariharan (12) and Ganendra (10). They looked very happy that night to have their father with them on his birthday.
There was a surprise announcement - the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu had dropped by to attend Mano's birthday party! Wow!
His mother and one of his sons, Hariharan.
Mano, may you and your family be always blessed. And may you serve the Nation well.