Nel Jayaraman, a humble farmer who revived more than 160 traditional paddy seeds, passed away at Apollo Hospitals in Chennai in the wee hours of today.
Doctors in Apollo Speciality Cancer Hospital at Teynampet, where Jayaraman was undergoing treatment, said his condition turned critical on Wednesday and he died at 5.19 am on Thursday.
The 54-year-old farmer is survived by his son and wife. The final rites will be performed tomorrow by noon at his home in Kattimedu, Thiruvarur district.
Jayaraman had sacrificed his life for protecting native paddy varieties for the future generations. He followed the footsteps of his late mentor Nammalvar and worked tirelessly to promote the cause of preserving native paddy seeds.
DMK president M K Stalin, MDMK general secretary Vaiko, PMK founder S Ramadoss, TMC president G K Vasan and other leaders have paid rich tributes to Jayaraman and expressed condolence over his death.
Actors Vishal, Karthi, Sivakarthikeyan and others too have condoled his death. Sivakarthikeyan has come forward to bear the expenses of shifting Jayaraman’s body to his native. He has also come forward to bear the educational expenses of Jayaraman’s son
Vishal tweeted: “Deeply saddened by the sudden passing of Nel Jayaraman Ayya. His contributions towards Agriculture & Farming is immense. He led many Youngters towards Agriculture. May his soul RIP & my condolences to his Friends & Family…. #NelJayaraman #RIPNelJayaraman.”