Government to convene the next meeting in three weeks

As the main opposition parties including Congress and AIADMK boycotted the first all party meeting organised by NR Congress on the issue of Statehood of Puducherry, the government has decided to convene the next meeting in three weeks to discuss the issue in detail.

According to sources in Congress and AIADMK, the party leaders did not participate in the meeting held on Sunday as it should have been convened by the Puducherry government and not by NR Congress. Apart from these two key opposition parties, Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK) also kept away.

When asked about the boycott, V. Bhalan, General Secretary, NR Congress, said that his party had called for the meeting to give a chance to political parties not represented in the Assembly to participate. The closed door meeting chaired by the Government’s Special representative in Delhi A. Bhakthavachalam, had representatives from the DMK, CPI, CPI (M), PMK, DMDK and fringe parties like Forward Block, BJP, BSP, RSP, NCP and former members of parliament - M. Ramadass and C.P. Tirunavukkarasu.

Incidentally, participants at the meeting made a similar demand echoing the ruling party’s by insisting that the next meeting to be convened by the government must have representatives from the State Assembly as well as those who are without representation in it since the issue concerned all.

It was also decided at the meeting to send a a delegation led by Chief Minister N. Rangasamy to New Delhi soon to meet the Prime Minister and other ministries concerned, sources said.

One of the main reasons given out for Statehood was that the elected government have no real powers since the Central Government was still in complete control of administration.