Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to drop Textiles Minister Dayanidhi Maran from the Union Cabinet in view of the CBI's status report in the 2G spectrum allocation case, saying he forced the promoter of Aircel to sell his shares to a Malaysian telecom company.

She was talking to journalists here after holding discussions with Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia.

Asked whether Mr. Maran should own moral responsibility and quit, she said: “There is no use in expecting Mr. Dayanidhi Maran to take moral responsibility and resign. It is high time that the Prime Minister dropped him from the Union Council of Ministers.”

As for the CBI's report against Mr. Maran, she said it was long overdue, and she was happy that the agency had submitted it now.

Earlier on arrival at the airport, some journalists wanted her reaction to the television news report on the “illegal” laying of optic fibre cables from Mr. Maran's residence to the Sun TV corporate office in Chennai during his tenure as Telecom Minister from 2004 to 07. She said the charge would be thoroughly examined and necessary action taken after she returned to Chennai.

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