Underlining the importance of Centre-State relations, Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi on Wednesday said the State should be given equal credit for implementing welfare schemes funded by the Centre.
At an agriculture conference, Mr. Karunanidhi said the DMK had left behind its initial day demands for Dravida Nadu and a separate Tamil State, as the Centre promised distribution of resources equally. Believing the Centre, the South, expecting equal treatment, agreed for a federal set up.
“If unity is harmful, let us know. We will think about it,” he said.
A few persons were claiming credit for the Centre even when it came to the State-sponsored schemes, Mr. Karunanidhi said, and asked those trying to confuse people in this manner to let the DMK take a clear and categorical stand.
The States never left out the Centre at the time of implementation of schemes. In fact, the Centre and States equally contributed to welfare. There was a contribution from the Centre to any scheme, including agricultural schemes. Similarly, the States had a share in Central schemes.
Stating that he never differentiated between the State and Centre as it would affect the interests of the States, Mr. Karunanidhi said the divisions were purely for administrative purposes and not to create differences among States.
The Chief Minister was sure that the State as well as the Centre, especially the ruling parties, perfectly knew the federal principles.
At the conference, Mr. Karunanidhi said that efforts would be taken up to create a horticultural university. Announcing that land tax of farmers would be completely scrapped this year in flood affected areas, the Chief Minister increased the pension for agricultural labourers to Rs. 500 from this year.