CM refuses comment on SC judge's remarks

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Chennai, Oct 3 (UNI) Refusing to comment on Supreme Court Judge B N Agrawal's ''threat'' to dismiss the DMK Government, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi today asserted that the government did not violate the apex court order restraining the bandh on October one, though it reached the government only at 2230 hrs on September 30.

Answering a set of questions, Mr Karunanidhi said he never made comments on the judiciary and even now, when it was alleged that the government had violated the apex court's order in connection with the bandh, he would not comment.

The Chief Minister, however, listed out the comments made by eminent lawyers and legal experts about Mr Justice Agrawal's oral remarks that the ''observance of bandh amounted to nothing but contempt of court and to a complete breakdown of constitutional machinery, warranting dismissal of the government.

Reacting to the charge that the government had ignored the stay against the bandh, Mr Karunanidhi clarified that after the Madras High Court had allowed the bandh with some conditions on September 28, the DMK and its allies geared up for the bandh.

The volunteers of the DMK and its allies and trade unions never expected that the Supreme Court would take up the case on an emergency basis on Sunday and pass an interim order staying the bandh.

The order staying the bandh had reached the Chief Secretary only at 2230 hrs on September 30, which left only a few hours gap before the start of the bandh the next day.

However, the apex court order was obeyed and complied with by the government. The secretariat functioned on October 1 when I and my cabinet colleagues discharged their duties. All government offices and some schools and colleges functioned, he said.

Train and air services were maintained and state transport corporation buses started plying in the afternoon, Mr Karunanidhi said.

There would have been no controversy about the compliance of the apex court's stay order, had those who levelled charges against the government realised that the news about staying the bandh reached the public and transport employees belatedly, he said.

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