Staff Reporter

Film artistes' silence condemned

MADURAI: The State Government should take steps to get the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal published in the gazette, said the Dalit Panthers of India leader, Thol. Thirumavalavan.

Briefing presspersons here recently, he welcomed the Chief Minister, M. Karunanidhi's preparedness for a general strike, if necessary.

The Pattali Makkal Katchi leader, S. Ramadoss, did not stress it at the end of an all-party meeting held recently, though he had raised the issue in the beginning, Mr. Thirumavalavan said.

The DPI also understood the reasons behind M.G.R. Kazhagam president RM. Veerappan's suggestion for an hour's strike, he added. Apart from these two, no other party representative stressed the strike but wanted the Government to ensure that no clash took place in the riparian States, he said.

Objecting to former Prime Minister Deve Gowda's suggestion of discussing the issue in Parliament, he said that it would lead to unnecessary problems and tension between the States.

He condemned film artistes in the State for remaining silent, with special reference to actor-turned-politician Vijayakanth, who had not commented on this issue.

On the Mullaperiyar dam issue, he said that the State Government should impress upon the Centre the need to find ways to implement the Supreme Court verdict.

He also urged the political parties to stop accusing the Government and join hands in its endeavours to sustain the pride of the State.

He wanted the Government to stop corporate giants from venturing into retail trade, as it would crush the interest of small traders.

Mr. Thirumavalavan wanted the Government to extend welfare assistance to S. Amalapushpam, granddaughter of freedom fighter Viswanathadas.

The DPI would host a conference on `land rights' on April 14 in Tirunelveli, he said.