Chennai: Tamil Nadu chief minister K Palaniswami on Wednesday unveiled the MGR Centenary Arch on Kamaraj Salai, a month after the Madras High Court allowed its unveiling sans any ceremony.

According to reports, Palaniswami unveiled the structure built at an estimated cost of Rs 2.52 crore from the state secretariat. Deputy chief minister O Panneerselvam and senior cabinet ministers were also present.

The 66 feet wide and 52 feet tall arch was proposed to commemorate the birth anniversary of the late chief minister MG Ramachandran, popularly known as MGR, also the AIADMK founder.

In January 2018, the Madras High Court had permitted the Tamil Nadu government to unveil the arch, but without any ceremony.

A division bench had said only the green net covering the arch should be removed, "without any ceremony in any manner."

In November 2018, the bench had passed an interim order, restraining the state government from inaugurating the arch, off the famous Marina beach, till disposal of public interest litigation opposing it.

The petitioner had alleged that the arch was constructed by encroaching upon arterial Kamarajar Salai and its pedestrian space meant for public use in total violation of various legislations.

As per the Tamil Nadu Highways Act, no permanent structure can be constructed either on the middle or the pathway of a road. Hence, any construction was unauthorised, the petitioner had said.

The ruling AIADMK celebrated the birth anniversary of MGR in 2017 on a grand scale, and Palaniswami laid the foundation stone for the arch in August 2018.

A charismatic leader, MGR a recipient of the Bharat Ratna, ruled Tamil Nadu from 1977 till his death in 1987 after breaking away from the DMK and forming the AIADMK in 1972.