CHENNAI: It was a busy day for Chief Minister ‘Edappadi’ K Palaniswami and his Cabinet colleagues in Delhi. Palaniswami met Prime Minister Narendra Modi at his chamber in Parliament hall and reiterated the demand for Tamil Nadu students to be exempted from NEET. Later, he took part in the swearing in ceremony of Ram Nath Kovind as the President of India.
After a couple of hours, he met NDA’s vice president candidate M Venkaiah Naidu and conveyed his party’s support to him in the ensuing election. Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha M Thambidurai and AIADMK (Amma) MPs and senior ministers. He also paid a courtesy visit to State Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao.
Meanwhile, Health Minister C Vijaya Basker denied the reports that the State government was planning to promulgate an Ordinance exempting TN students from NEET for two years and had submitted the draft to Centre.
“Till now, we have not submitted any such draft Ordinance. We are still pressing for the exemption from NEET forever,” the Health Minister told Express. However, official sources said that last year, the State government managed to get a one-year exemption and this year too, ministers are trying to ensure it’s exempted at least for this year.
“The Prime Minister has promised to consider our demand for exemption from NEET,” the Chief Minister told media. Responding to a question on Kathiramangalam protests against an ONGC project, Palaniswami said the project was being implemented since 2001 and now only damaged pipes are being repaired. “Due to the instigation of some people, protests are being held,” he said.
“Already we have clarified that no project that would go against the interest of the farmers would be allowed,” he added.
Palaniswami said “Already we have clarified that no project that would go against the interest of the farmers would be allowed. As far hydrocarbon project, it came into effect during the previous DMK regime and not during the current AIADMK regime.
When it was brought to his notice about farmer leader Ayyakannu’s claim that the chief minister was now backtracking on waiver of loans for the farmers due to implementation of GST, Palaniswami denied that as wrong information. He said the government had been disbursing assistance and compensation to the farmers affected by drought.
The chief minister, after meeting Venkaiah Naidu, said Naidu was a leader respected by late Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa. Thanking Palaniswami, Naidu said the vice president post was above politics and would try to live up to the expectations of the people. “I assure my support in the coming days, in whatever manner is possible in the interest of Tamil Nadu and their problems, if any, I will do my best to assist them in my responsibility as the vice president of the country and as chairman of Rajya Sabha,” Naidu added.
Temporary relief from NEET a betrayal: Stalin
Chennai: Pitching for a permanent insulation from the NEET exam, DMK working president MK Stalin on Tuesday said any temporary relief would mean committing betrayal of students of Tamil Nadu. “Tamil Nadu ministers have knelt before the Centre seeking at least an year’s exemption from NEET. This is against the sentiments behind the adoption of the two bills by the Assembly,” he said.