TAMIL NADU

BJP hails announcement on relief distribution

Says it will reduce anxiety among flood affected people "The demand for the Chief Minister's resignation will only hamper relief management"

Special Correspondent

CHENNAI: Welcoming the State Government's announcement that the flood relief package will be distributed to the affected with no final date set, the Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday criticised the attempts at politicising the stampede.

BJP State president C.P. Radhakrishnan told reporters that the Government's move would reduce the anxiety among the flood-hit people.

Spreading of rumours

Contending that lapses on the part of the administration alone did not lead to the stampede, he said spreading of rumours also contributed.

The demand for the Chief Minister's resignation would only hamper the relief management.

The BJP leader, who represented Coimbatore in the Lok Sabha twice, alleged that after the Coimbatore serial blasts in 1998, the then Dravida Munentra Kazhagam regime did not take action against those responsible.

Rs.1,500 cr. assistance

On the Centre releasing Rs. 500 crore more to the State, he said the Centre should give at least Rs. 1,500 crore as interim assistance. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi were yet to visit the State.

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, instead of politicising the stampede, should pull up its Ministers who had failed to arrange a visit by the Prime Minister to the State.

Mentioning the incidents of breach of tanks and tank bunds, Mr. Radhakrishnan wondered why the State Government had not acted swiftly against the anti-social elements behind it. It was the same administration that had urged the people to adopt rainwater harvesting on a war footing.

Not against reservation

Explaining his party's position on the Constitutional amendment Bill providing reservation to socially and economically backward Classes and Scheduled Castes /Scheduled Tribes, he said it was not against reservation but wanted the principle of reservation to be applied to institutions run by minorities. This was because of the large number of institutions managed by minorities.

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