Today's Paper

'DMK agitation not against Centre'

CHENNAI Sept. 26. The DMK president, M. Karunanidhi, today denied that the agitation by the party scheduled for December demanding withdrawal of the Prevention of Terrorism Act was against the Centre.

The Prime Minister himself said recently that the POTA must be reviewed, if reports of the Act being misused by State Governments were true, Mr. Karunanidhi told newsmen here.

The agitation was to emphasise the party's commitment to its basic principles and policies and in support of its demands. As the DMK's demands, such as the repeal of the POTA, involved both the Centre and the State Government, it had to organise agitations against them.

Refuting the all-India BJP secretary's charge that the protest was against coalition dharma, Mr. Karunanidhi said, "Dharma is too big a word and people such as Mr.Ganesan should not use it".

Reacting to Mr.Ganesan's statement that he would meet the Prime Minister to apprise him of the political situation in Tamil Nadu, Mr. Karunanidhi said there was no need for BJP leaders to go to Delhi, as everyone knew what transpired between the Prime Minister and the leaders during his visit to Tamil Nadu.

Asked whether the party would withdraw from the National Democratic Alliance to uphold its principles and policies, Mr. Karunanidhi said when it was a choice between policies and alliance, the party would choose the former. Moreover, even when the NDA was formed, the DMK made it clear that at no point of time alliance partners should deviate from the common agenda. If a major party such as the BJP started talking about constructing a temple at Ayodhya, the DMK had to rethink its position.

Earlier, in a letter to cadres, Mr. Karunanidhi asked them to organise Statewide public meetings to explain the resolutions adopted at the party's recent conference at Villupuram and the need to organise an agitation against the Centre and the State Government demanding withdrawal of the POTA.

Recommended for you