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DMK invites Congress’ discomfort on Tamil issue - report

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Much to the Congress’s discomfort, the DMK will be holding a Tamil Eelam Supporters’ Organisation conference in New Delhi on March 7, in the wake of the fresh allegations of war crimes surfacing against the Sri Lankan government in the international media. 

The DMK has called all political parties to its conference causing much consternation in the Congress.DMK Parliamentary Party leader T R Baalu said he has “even’’ sent a letter to the Congress for participation in the conference. “Let them also take a call,” he said. The situation reached such a flashpoint that the Congress accused its ally of “needlessly politicising a diplomatic concern which can be better handled otherwise’’.

Even as its confrontation with the Congress escalates over the Tamil issue, the DMK is playing footsie with the BJP. A senior BJP leader from the Lok Sabha said that he has been holding meetings with Baalu over a number of issues. For the TESO conference, the DMK’s anointed king-in-waiting M K Stalin will be coming to Delhi. Stalin has already held meetings with UN Deputy General Secretary Jan Eliasson and UNHRC Commissioner Navaneethan Pillai on the Tamil issue. The hype in the DMK was such that initially it was claimed that M Karunanidhi himself will be attending the meeting.

The Tamil Nadu Congress Committee chief B S Gnanadesikan had a sharp exchange of words with his fellow DMK MP Tiruchi Shiva during a call attention motion on the plight of Lankan Tamils in Rajya Sabha on March 27. It was, perhaps, the first time that the two UPA allies had an open altercation in Parliament in the open. Afterwards a DMK leader told The Sunday Standard, “We’ll ‘not even’ send an invite (of the TESO) of the conference to the Congress—they are clearly against the cause.’’ The indications were that the DMK was not averse to exploring options since the UPA-II in any case is on its last leg.

The public opinion in Tamil Nadu too is ranged against the neighbouring Sri Lankan Government more so after pictures of the alleged cold blooded killing of 12-year-old Balachandra, son of LTTE chief V Prabhakaran, surfaced in the international media. This is over and above the alleged harassment of Tamil Nadu fisherfolk at the hands of the Lankan Navy. That the AIADMK under Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has virtually snatched the Lankan-Tamil issue from the DMK by taking a tough stand has left the latter with little option but to get aggressive.

The DMK is so politically cornered that it has thought it fit to bring the Lankan issue on the national stage in Delhi to regain some of its old space. So, under no circumstances can it listen to the Congress or abide by the Central’s government diplomatic compulsions. – Express News Service

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