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Chief Minister clarifies on MPs’ Sri Lankan visit

[Hindu, Sunday, 11 October 2009 19:16 No Comment]

Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi on Sunday clarified that it was the collective initiative of his party, the Congress and the Viduthalai Chiruthaikal Katchi that led to a 10-member team of MPs going to Sri Lanka and that it would submit its report to the leaders of the parties.

In a statement here, the Chief Minister said that neither the Centre nor the State government would have to bear the expenditure for the visit. “Instead, the parties will bear the expenses of their members’ visit. The delegation has been allowed by both the Indian government and the Sri Lankan government.”

Reacting to the Opposition’s criticism that MPs of other political parties were not included in the team, the Chief Minister said if these parties were genuinely interested in knowing the conditions of Tamils in Sri Lanka, they could have approached both the governments.

“They don’t take any initiative but always criticise our efforts. Will it solve the problems of the Sri Lankan Tamils?” he asked, and recalled how the Opposition parties had boycotted the all-party meeting convened by the State government to discuss the Sri Lankan Tamils issue.

On Ms. Jayalalithaa’s earlier query as to how Deputy Chief Minister M.K. Stalin could lead a team of MPs, the Chief Minister said neither the State government nor the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam had made any announcement in this regard. “If she issues a statement based on media speculation, we can understand: she’s in a hurry.”

“If the government has announced in Parliament that it would send a team, it can submit the report either to the government or Parliament. Ms. Jayalalithaa is not able to understand this simple procedure,” he said.

[Full Coverage]

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