COIMBATORE: Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Monday appealed to the minorities not to fall for DMK’s fear-mongering tactics and reiterated that there is no need to fear the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Population Register (NPR). Talking to reporters at the airport, the Chief Minister accused the Opposition of indulging in a smear campaign against AIADMK on this issue.
Despite the Centre making details such as parents’ birthplace, language and Aadhaar numbers optional for the NPR exercise, Palaniswami said the DMK has been inciting fear among minorities by spreading false information for political gain.
“I will assure you that none belonging to minorities will be affected in Tamil Nadu,” Palaniswami said, adding that the NPR is taken up once in 10 years and it was Congress-DMK combine that conceptualised and initiated the NPR in 2011. He also criticised DMK organising secretary RS Bharathi for his allegedly provocative speeches against media and oppressed communities.
AIADMK will continue in power: EPS
TO a question on increasing debt burden on the State exchequer, the CM said 10 years ago, immediately after DMK’s regime ended, the total credit was around Rs1 lakh crore. “The number might seem low compared to the present Rs4.5 lakh crore (including Rs1 lakh crore). But, consider the price rise (inflation) and do a comparison. We are paying interests for loans they (DMK) took. The increase in credit (by Rs3.5 lakh crore) is also because of spending on various welfare schemes,” Palaniswami said.
In response to DMK president MK Stalin’s statement seeking a White Paper on the government’s financial position, the CM asked if DMK had released it for the Rs1 lakh crore debt during its regime. “Stalin is dreaming about becoming Chief Minister. But, AIADMK will continue to stay in power after the Assembly elections in 2021,” he said.
When asked about his absence during US President Donald Trump’s reception in Gujarat on Monday, he said he was preoccupied with former CM J Jayalalithaa’s 72nd birth anniversary celebration.Referring to data released by National Crime Records Bureau, he said Coimbatore and Chennai have emerged as safe cities for women, as law and order is maintained well. On the release of seven convicts in Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, he said, “When DMK was in power, it had passed a resolution only for the release of Nalini and for conviction for six others. So the DMK is not fit to talk about it. Our (AIADMK) government passed a resolution seeking the release of all seven convicts and sent it to the governor. The governor is the one who has to take final call on this,” he said.