Criticising the stand taken by the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) general secretary J. Jayalalithaa regarding the proposed World Classical Tamil Conference, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi on Wednesday said there was no politics involved in the conduct of the conference as alleged by her.

In a statement here, he said the decision to host the conference came only after consulting Tamil scholars.

The four-day conference, to be held at Coimbatore from June 24 next year, assumes significance as it is being held after the Centre accorded Tamil the classical language status, he said.

Though the previous eight Tamil conferences were held as World Tamil Conference, Tamil scholars and researchers felt it would be pertinent to call it as World Classical Tamil Conference following the Centre granting classical language status to Tamil.

Ms. Jayalalithaa had on Tuesday said her party would boycott the conference organised by the state government as it was not in the series of International Association for Tamil Research’s (IATR) ‘World Tamil Conference’

Rejecting Ms. Jayalalithaa’s charge that the conference did not have the support of IATR, Mr. Karunanidhi said six of the nine members from IATR had given their approval.

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) decided to organise the conference in 2010 as it could not be done in January 2011 as suggested by IATR president and Japanese professor Noburu Kashima, since the state would be busy with the assembly elections due in April-May 2011, he said.

Ms. Jayalalithaa’s remark came two days after Mr. Karunanidhi wrote to all parties in the Assembly, seeking cooperation for the success of the conference, besides requesting them to be part of the organising committees.

Stating that Tamil scholars and researchers involved in organising the conference were well aware of the fact from the beginning that there was no politics involved in it, Mr. Karunanidhi asked Ms. Jayalalithaa to be a “responsible main Opposition leader” especially on issues concerning Tamil, Tamil development and research.

“Since the conference is being organised after a gap of 14 years, it will provide a platform for researchers and scholars to come under one roof and share their knowledge and take up research on Tamil literature,” he said.

He also claimed that more than 50 Tamil researchers and scholars from India and across the world congratulated and thanked the state government for coming forward to host the conference