Chief Minister M.Karunanidhi on Saturday said that Dravidian era in Tamil Nadu would continue even after completion of the present term by the DMK government.
Inaugurating South-East Asia's biggest desalination plant at Minjur in Tiruvallur district, he said the era would continue under his leadership or by others in the DMK. Referring to reports in a section of the media questioning Deputy Chief Minister M.K.Stalin's claim that many projects would be completed when the DMK's term would be over in 2011, he said that Dravidan era would never end. He, however, added that when he was talking about the Dravidian era, he was not referring to political parties that just bore the prefix ‘Dravidian' in their names. He said he was referring to the “Dravidam” created by Periyar and approved former Chief Minister C.N.Annadurai.
The Chief Minister said he would implement more and more projects if the people continued to support the DMK regime. Pointing out that Tamil Nadu was not a surplus State when it came to water sources and that a major portion of land was not very fertile, he said it was depending on its neighbours such as Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Because “I am adopting a friendly attitude towards these States and only taking legal remedies to get Tamil Nadu's share of water, these States are fulfilling our requirements. But they also would not be in a position to release water if the monsoon fails,” he said, adding that it was to meet the drinking water needs of the people that a desalination plant had been set up.
Recalling various drinking water projects implemented in Chennai since the days of the British, Deputy Chief Minister M.K.Stalin said that in the present regime various projects, including the Rs.616 crore Ramanathapuram Combined Drinking Water Project and the Hogenakkal Combined Drinking Water Projects had been taken up. He alleged that the previous AIADMK government failed to utilise the Rs.100 crore financial assistance announced by the UPA government for the desalination plant. It was only the DMK Government which had implemented the project.
Chief Secretary K.S.Sripathi said the present government was not only conceiving projects, but both the Chief Minister and the Deputy Chief Minister were ensuring that the projects were implemented.
K.Ashok Vardhan Shetty, Chairman, CMWSSB, Shiv Das Meena, Managing Director, CMWSSB and Fisheries Minister, K.P.P.Samy, were among those who participated.