Vazhappady K. Ramamurthy

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Vazhapadi Ramamurthy (died 20 October 2002) was an Indian politician from Tamil Nadu. He served as Union Minister of Petroleum as part of NDA government under Atal Behari Vajpayee.

Political career[edit]

Ramamurthy came to politics through the Dravidar Kazhagam (DK) founded by the late Periyar E. V. Ramasamy. He was an ardent follower of the late K Kamaraj and E. V. K. Sampath. He belonged to the Vanniyar community.,[1][2]

He served as the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee president. During 1969-71 He was the President, Youth Congress, Distt. Salem, Tamil Nadu. In 1989 he was appointed as the President, Pradesh Congress Committee (Indira), Tamil Nadu by Rajiv Gandhi.

Ramamurthy was elected as a member of the Lok Sabha six times and was defeated once, in 1996. He was involved with the International Labour Organisation and served as minister of state for Labour with independent charge in the Congress government led by P. V. Narasimha Rao for a brief period in 1991. He quit his ministerial post on the Cauvery issue.[3]

He was president of the TNCC for six years before being replaced in 1996 when he formed the Tamil Nadu unit of the Tiwari Congress. Ramamurthy went back to the Congress but left that party again to form Tamizhaga Rajiv Congress (TRC). He was part of NDA and become Union Minister of Petroleum. In January 2002 he merged TRC with the congress after a break of about eight years.[citation needed]

Trade union career[edit]

Associated with various trade unions and workers' organisations:

  • Honorary President, I.N.T.U.C., Tamil Nadu; Founder President, International Institute for Non-aligned Studies. President,Indian National Rural Labour Federation (INRLF), 1983–88; 1978–82 and 1988 onwards;
  • Vice-President,I.N.T.U.C., Tamil Nadu since 1974; International Federation of Plantation, Agriculture and Allied Workers Geneva, 1987 and 1988–94; Agricultural Workers Trade Group of International Federation of Union for Food and Agriculture (IUF);
  • Member, Employees State Insurance Corporation and Newsprint Advisory Corporation.[4]

Electoral records[edit]

He was Member of Parliament elected from Tamil Nadu. He was elected to the Lok Sabha as an Indian National Congress candidate from Dharmapuri constituency in 1977 election and from Krishnagiri constituency in 1984, 1989 and 1991 elections.[5][6][7][8] He was elected from Krishnagiri constituency as an Indian National Congress (Indira) candidate in 1980 election.[9] He was elected from Salem constituency as an Independent candidate in 1998 election.[10]

Parliament Committees[edit]

1977-79 Member, Committee on Papers Laid on the Table; Member, Business Advisory Committee; Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Labour; Deputy Chief Whip, Congress Parliamentary Party,(Indira) [C.P.P.(I)]

1980 Member, Committee on Public Undertakings; Member, Business Advisory Committee; Member, Committee on Privileges; Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Labour

1984-86 Chairman, Committee on Public Undertakings; Member, Committee on Public Accounts;Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Labour

1990 Member, Committee of Privileges, Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Labour and Welfare [11]


Ramamurthy died in Chennai on 27 October 2002.[12] The Prime Minister of India, Atal Behari Vajpayee, said Ramamurthy had worked hard throughout his life towards ameliorating the condition of the working class and that he had made significant contributions to the trade union movement and other nation-building activities. The Congress president, Sonia Gandhi, remembered Ramamurthy as a stalwart of Tamil Nadu politics. In her message to the bereaved family, she said the Congress had lost a valued and respected leader.[13]