Alluding to the arrest of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam propaganda secretary and former Communications Minister A. Raja in the 2G spectrum allocation case, party president and Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi acknowledged on Thursday that the episode did rattle the party “to some extent.”

The issue did dampen the morale of the cadre. However, “I am certain that eventually truth will triumph,” Mr. Karunanidhi said at the party's general council here.

Later, at a public meeting in the evening, Mr. Karunanidhi defended Mr. Raja, saying he was paying the price for making mobile phone services affordable to the people. “I commend Raja who is now languishing in jail in Delhi for his service to the poor people,” he said while comparing Mr. Raja to Mahabali. In an emotional speech, he said the DMK was being targeted by the media and the Opposition, and it was up to the Tamil people to save the party.

“I am placing the party in your hands, and it is up to you to preserve Dravidian principles and the Dravidian people,” he told the gathering.

At the general council, in a resolution on the spectrum allocation issue, the party condemned “the Opposition's attempts to malign the DMK at any cost.” It noted that “as far as this issue is concerned, the DMK has remained an open book.”