Kanimozhi defends Karunanidhi stand on Ram Sethu

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New Delhi, Oct 13 (UNI) In a strong defence of her father's stand on the Ram Sethu controversy, DMK MP Kanimozhi today denied that Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi called Lord Ram a drunkard, and said he only questioned the values in Hinduism which were used to suppress the people.

"He did not try to insult or hurt anyone...He was merely quoting Valmiki who said Lord Ram drank," she said in "Devil's Advocate" programme being telecast on CNN-IBN tomorrow.

In this context, she said "the people who were against the Sethusamudram project were trying to derive political mileage...which is insulting to Lord Ram." Ms Kanimozhi said Dravidian leaders, right from E V Ramaswamy Naicker (Periyar) and former chief minister C N Annadurai, had also questioned the values in Hinduism. But more importance was given to what Mr Karunanidhi had said by those who opposed the Sethusamudram project.

Asked if Mr Karunanidhi had any regret for hurting peoples sentiments through his remarks about Lord Ram, Ms Kanimozhi said he had already explained.

In this context, she said " there are different versions of Ramayana...We have a Chief Minister who is well read." When interviewer Karan Thapar asked if he was taking advantage of that, she said he had to explain to the people the way they understand. When her attention was drawn to the statement of the BJP, daring Mr Karunanidhi to make sarcastic remarks against Jesus Christ or other religious gods, she said there was also a belief that Adam had walked on the controversial bridge in Rameswaram. "So it also means it has some religious meaning to other religions also." Asked if the emotional bond between the Mr Karunanidhi and Mr Maran family had broken, Ms Kanimozhi said "time has to say." She gave the same reply when asked if the rift was irreconcilable.

Replying to a question, she said it was not a family rivalry that cost Mr Dayanidhi Maran the ministerial berth in the Manmohan Singh cabinet. "It is political...When you go against the party, party will have to take action." On the ferocious acrimony between Mr Karunanidhi and Leader of Opposition and AIADMK Chief J Jayalalithaa, Ms Kanimozhi said her father had been keeping good relationship with other leaders beyond politics. Therefore, it would not be fair to blame him for the "sad and unhealthy situation." Asked if Ms Jayalalithaa had to be blamed for it, she quipped "I can't say." UNI SH BDP RN1924

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