Do not trust Rajapakse, appeals Karunanidhi

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Chennai, Nov 14: Asserting that the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam(DMK) was even prepared to quit the Union Cabinet on the Eelam Tamils issue, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi today appealed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh not to get carried away by the assurances given by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse that Eelam Tamils would be protected.

Responding to concerns expressed by members of various parties on Mr Rajapakse stoutly rejecting a ceasefire and that Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eeelam(LTTE) would be dealt with militarily, Mr Karunanidhi said the Lanka President's remarks were aimed at cheating the Tamils.

The Union Government should clearly understand this and should not get carried away. ''I hope the Centre will understand the tactics of the Lankan Government'', he added.

Stating that Mr Rajapakse had dealt the ongoing war in two ways namely, LTTE would be dealt with militarily and Tamils in Sri Lanka would not be attacked by the military troops, Mr Karunanidhi said both Dr Singh and All India Congress Committee(AICC) President and United Progressive Alliance(UPA) Chairperson Sonia Gandhi should handle the issue carefully.

The assurance by Mr Rajapkase that Tamils will not be attacked and they would be protected could not be believed. ''If the LTTE was attacked by the Lankan military, the bombs will fall on Tamils.

Similarly, if Tamils were attacked, the bombs will fall on the LTTE.

We should not be deceived by this'', he said and cautioned the Centre to be careful in handling the issue.

Observing that Terrorism was present in every country, be it India, Pakistan, England and the United States, Mr Karunanidhi said in none of these countries their own countrymen were killed in the name of tackling terrorism. ''On behalf of India, the Prime Minister should insist this point in clear terms to Mr Rajapakse'', he added.

He always believed that right from the days of Mahatma Gandhi, rationalist leader and Dravida Kazhagam(DK) founder-leader Periyar E V Ramasamy and DMK founder-president and former Chief Minister C N Annadurai, the peace struggles had always borne fruit, he said and added the DMK was even prepared to quit the union cabinet, as demanded by Deputy Leader of the Opposition O Panneerselvam (AIADMK).

Earlier, speaking on the issue during Zero Hour, Mr Panneerselvam recalled the ultimatum issued by the DMK to the Centre, demanding its intervention for immediate ceasefire in Sri Lanka and said it was high time the DMK, Pattali Makkal Katchi(PMK) and the Congress resign their MP posts and the DMK withdrew its support to the Centre on the issue.


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