Special Correspondent

“Members of alliance parties too indulged in anti-cooperative activities”

CHENNAI: Elections to cooperative bodies will be conducted after considering the suggestions of political parties and court rulings and in a cordial atmosphere without adversely affecting the spirit of the cooperative movement, Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi said on Saturday.

In a statement here, Mr. Karunanidhi said the polls would be conducted in a democratic manner after discussing the issue with legislative party leaders.

Elections to only 25 out of 23,000 cooperative bodies were stated to be marred by problems in the first phase of elections, he said, adding that the issue was blown out of proportion by the media to hurt the DMK-led alliance.

He said members of the ruling party as well as its alliance partners had indulged in unwanted, anti-cooperative activities in some places, and this was the reason for the cancellation of the poll process after it had commenced.

Mr. Karunanidhi said he agreed with his mentor and former Chief Minister C.N. Annadurai that cooperative polls should be totally apolitical and the movement should be beyond political considerations. In this regard, he pointed out that there was no discussion among the alliance partners on seat-sharing nor was there any political understanding among themselves.

However, during the first phase, the alliance parties started issuing statements favouring party-based elections and demanding a share of seats.

They also complained that they were never consulted before the elections.

Mr. Karunanidhi said the cooperative polls would be held at an appropriate time.

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