K.K.S.S.R. Ramachandran gets Handlooms, Textiles
Allegations of land grabbing against the Minister
Charges against other Ministers not true: Karunanidhi
CHENNAI: Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi dropped Handlooms Minister N.K.K.P. Raja from his Cabinet following allegations that the Minister was involved in a land grabbing incident.
A note from the Raj Bhavan said: “On the advice of the Hon. Chief Minister, Thiru N.K.K.P.Raja, Minister for Handlooms is relieved from the Cabinet with immediate effect.
“The subjects Handlooms and Textiles hitherto held by N.K.K.P.Raja are reallocated to Thiru K.K.S.S.R.Ramachandran, Minister for Backward Classes, in addition to the subjects held by him.”
In a statement issued later on Thursday, Mr.Karunanidhi said: “In respect of the case filed in the High Court against Thiru N.K.K.P.Raja, Minister for Handlooms, that he has abducted one Palanisami, his wife Malarvizhi and their son Sivabalan consequent on a land transaction, the said abducted people have themselves appeared in the Court and Thiru Sivabalan has said that he was not at all abducted by anyone.
“On enquiry about the incident, it has come to light that a case has been filed that Sampathkumar, secretary of AIADMK labour union, and one Sundararajan have attempted to occupy the lands forcibly at the instigation of the Minister. Since there appears to be a basis for the above allegation against the Minister, Thiru Raja is relieved from his ministerial responsibilities until the verdict of the court is known.”
In Erode, Mr. Raja, a first time MLA and Minister, said that it was the Chief Minister’s prerogative to decide who should continue in the Cabinet.
He was not upset and had accepted the decision with equanimity. Mr.Raja said that he was not aware of the reason behind his removal from the Cabinet and said that he would continue to work for the betterment of the party.
Mr. Ramachandran, who has been given the portfolio, turns 59 on Friday.
He was shifted from the Health portfolio in October last year.
Responding to allegations of wrong-doing on the part of three other Ministers – T.M.Anbarasan, Suresh Rajan and Veerapandi Arumugham – Mr.Karunanidhi said that the allegations were not true. Mr. Anbarasan was alleged to have harboured an accused in a murder case.
“I have caused enquiries through appropriate official channels…The enquiry has revealed that the report that Thiru T.M.Anbarasan, Labour Minister, is protecting an accused in a murder case by the name Kumar, who is wanted by the police, is false. It is also clearly known that the Minister is in no way preventing the arrest of the accused.”
On the charges against Mr. Suresh Rajan, Tourism Minister, he said: “There is no prima facie for the case registered against Thiru.Suresh Rajan under the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. I do not rely on this accusation since he has been an ardent follower of Dravidian movement right from his younger days.”
In Mr. Arumugham’s case, the police had sent a report to the court on its direction.
“After enquiring about this report, it has become clear that there is no basis for the allegation,” he said.