Jayalalithaa attacks Karunanidhi over Food Security Bill

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Chennai, August 5: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa on Monday accused arch rival and DMK president M. Karunanidhi of betraying the interests of the state by extending support to the National Food Security Bill.

The chief minister said the bill would result in food insecurity in the state.

Jayalalithaa slaps Karuna's Food Bill

In a statement issued here, Jayalalithaa said: "The DMK, which opposed the National Food Security Bill when it was introduced in the Lok Sabha, has changed its position and said it would now support it."

Citing news reports, she said the DMK had opposed the bill in the Lok Sabha in May.

Jayalalithaa referred to news reports quoting DMK Member of Parliament T.K.S. Elangovan's comments that the bill was useful for the common man. Elangovan had questioned why the bill was being opposed.

"Now Karunanidhi is laying the foundation for extending the party's support to the bill," Jayalalithaa said.

She said that through Elangovan, the DMK chief had conveyed that the party would support the food security bill that was totally against the state.

The chief minister said she had told the central government that the proposed food security law, with lots of confusing provisions, would result in increased expenditure to Tamil Nadu, which was already spending around Rs.5,000 crore by supplying food items at free/subsidised rates.

Jayalalithaa said the proposed law would destabilise the public distribution system in the state and the benefits will not be enjoyed by the poor, but by others.

She said that as per the provisions of the proposed bill, the rice allocation to the state will come down by 100,000 tonnes per month, and the state would have to spend an additional Rs.3,000 crore per year to procure rice.

Jayalalithaa said Karunanidhi seemed to have forgotten the poor people of Tamil Nadu once his daughter Kanimozhi was elected to the Rajya Sabha.

Kanimozhi was re-elected to Rajya Sabha recently with Congress support.

IANS

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