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Linking of rivers MDMK's top priority

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MDMK general secretary Vaiko releasing the party manifesto in Chennai on Wednesday. Photo: K. Pichumani
MDMK general secretary Vaiko releasing the party manifesto in Chennai on Wednesday. Photo: K. Pichumani

Special Correspondent

Manifesto promises to work for resolving river water disputes

CHENNAI: The Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) on Wednesday said the party stood for nationalisation of all inter-State rivers and linking of all rivers in the southern peninsula in the first phase to find a lasting solution to river water disputes, besides irrigating fallow land.

The MDMK manifesto for the May 8 Assembly election, released by its general secretary Vaiko at a party rally here, said the linking of rivers would benefit crores of farmers and farm workers.

It would also enable the administration to provide protected drinking water to the people.

Cauvery issue

The party would strive for early announcement of the final award by the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal and would ask the Centre to ensure water release by Karnataka as per the Tribunal's direction.

The MDMK promised to take steps to assert the State's rights in the Mullaiperiyar and Palar disputes.

The party would work for setting up desalination plants for using seawater for drinking and irrigation purposes.

The manifesto favoured the formation of a `State Cable Corporation' to put an end to monopoly in the cable network, besides enabling all sections to avail themselves of the facility.

Tamils' issue

Reiterating its "consistent stand" on the Sri Lankan Tamils' issue, the MDMK said creation of Tamil Eelam would provide a lasting solution to the ethnic crisis in the island.

The party welcomed the State Government's decision to abolish common entrance test for professional courses and called upon the Centre to provide legal safeguards to the move.

Though there was a substantial increase in the number of arts and science and engineering colleges, the number of medical colleges in the State was less.

It stressed the need to relax rules and regulations to ensure that every district had one medical college. The party would urge the Government to provide free higher education to the oppressed sections.

"Restore quota"

The MDMK favoured restoration of quota for Sri Lankan Tamil refugees in arts and science and professional colleges.

It called for implementation of reservation in institutions of excellence such as Indian Institute of Technology and All India Institute of Medical Sciences.

The party would strive for introduction of proportional representation system in the country.

Addressing the rally, Mr.Vaiko said the choice before the electorate was between the "dominance of a family and the welfare of the State."

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