Staff Reporter

State, Centre committing fraud on people of Tamil Nadu: former Union Minister "Full-fledged modern airports could be built away from the city and connected by six or four lane-highways and even metro rail network," he says

TAMBARAM: The former Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation, Rajiv Pratap Rudy, on Monday charged the State and Central Governments with committing a big fraud on the people of Tamil Nadu by forcing the Chennai airport modernisation programme and also by remaining silent despite protests by the people.

Taking part in a meeting organised by the Bharatiya Janata Party at the Pozhichalur bus stand to protest the land acquisition scheme for the proposed Chennai airport modernisation programme, he alleged that the State Government had drawn up an anti-people scheme and MPs from Tamil Nadu were providing "tacit support to it by remaining silent to people's protests."

Mr. Rudy said he was ready to lead the people's struggle. A modern airport was needed in Chennai with world-class runways and other facilities. But the State should look for "newer green fields" instead of trying out to carve new space adjacent to the existing airport at the expense of the livelihood of a several thousand people.

V.R. Sivaraman, BJP's Kancheepuram (North) district secretary, alleged that while the original plan was to expand the airport in the vast areas in northern direction, it was changed to northwest areas only to safeguard the interests of a small section of people.

C.P. Radhakrishnan, BJP State president, charged the Tamil Nadu MPs with failing to protect the interests of the people who voted them to power.