Reiterating her demand for sending back Sri Lankan Air Force personnel [undergoing training in Bangalore], Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Friday criticised her political rival and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam president M. Karunanidhi for duplicity on the issue.

Referring to his response to a reporter’s query about his stand if the personnel were sent to some other State for training, the Chief Minister termed it evasive and said the response was shorn of Tamil sentiments.

It reminded one of how he had acted on the Mullaperiyar dam issue a few years ago when he had first announced that he would hold a meeting in Madurai to condemn the Union government only to abandon it later.

She said Mr. Karunanidhi gave such a reaction on the airmen issue out of ‘fear’ that Union Ministers [belonging to his party] might be sacked and there would be an adverse outcome in the 2G spectrum allocation case.

“If he is genuinely concerned about the Tamil race, Mr. Karunanidhi, who is backing the Centre to the hilt, should have urged the Union government to return the Air Force personnel to Sri Lanka. [However,] no one would be surprised over the conduct of Mr. Karunanidhi, who would otherwise get things done by threatening the Central government on matters concerning himself and his family, for not doing anything for the welfare of Sri Lankan Tamils.”

She added that it was regrettable that the Union government, which should have acted like a tiger, was as meek as a mouse when it came to the Sri Lankan government.