Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Tuesday sought the resignation of Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram, alleging that he got himself elected to Parliament through “fraudulent'' means.
“Mr. Chidambaram was never elected to Parliament in 2009. He has played a fraud on the nation,'' she said at her maiden press conference here after her All-India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) returned to power with a resounding victory in the recent elections.
Mr. Chidambaram became the successful candidate in the Sivaganga constituency in 2009 because of a “fraud'' committed by a data entry operator. “His continuation in the Union Council of Minister is untenable,” she said.
Ms. Jayalalithaa was responding to a question relating to her party candidate Raja Kannappan, who contested against Mr. Chidambaram. Asked whether Mr. Kannappan, who eventually lost the election to Mr. Chidambaram, would pursue the case pending in the Madras High Court, she said: “We will try to expedite the hearing of the case.”
‘Maran must also go'
She also demanded the resignation of Union Textiles Minister Dayanidhi Maran in the wake of allegations of a quid pro quo in the 2G spectrum allocation scam. “If he does not resign on his own, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh should drop him from the Union Council of Ministers.” She, however, noted that she did not raise this issue during her meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh earlier in the day.
Ms. Jayalalithaa brushed aside questions about the possibility of the Congress and the AIADMK coming together again.
“The Congress still has an alliance with the DMK. The Congress and the DMK continue to be partners at the Centre and in the State. In such a situation, it will not be appropriate for me to call on Congress president Sonia Gandhi,'' she said to another question on the invitation extended last month by Ms. Gandhi for a meeting over a cup of tea, while congratulating her on the victory in the Assembly polls.
“I cannot answer hypothetical questions,'' she said when asked whether she was open to the idea of the AIADMK aligning with the Congress in the event of the DMK walking out of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance. She, however, said that a suggestion in this regard must first come from the Congress.
On the Lokpal Bill, she said: “The Draft Bill was sent to us. We have asked for some more time to respond, as it is just about a month since I have assumed charge as Chief Minister.” Everyone in the country was concerned about corruption. “The Supreme Court is very active in tackling corruption. We are happy about it,'' she said.
Ms. Jayalalithaa denied that she was vindictive towards the DMK. “All the cases against the DMK and its members have been initiated by the Centre, of which the DMK is a partner. None of the cases was filed either by me or my party members.''
Asked whether her government was planning to file cases against the former DMK Ministers in the State, she said: “We are not looking for any such opportunity. We are more interested in the development of the State.''
Keywords: Jayalalithaa Delhi visit