'Congress will face consequences if India attends CHOGM'

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Karuna says no to CWG in Sri Lanka
Chennai, Oct 31: Amid speculation over Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's participation in the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting or CHOGM at Colombo next month, the DMK today reiterated that India should boycott it to register protest over the alleged war crimes against Tamils in Sri Lanka.

In a sharp reaction to reports in a section of the press that Dr Singh is likely to attend the meet, DMK chief M Karunanidhi said the people of Tamil Nadu expect that there should not even be a symbolic participation from India at CHOGM.

"When we say India should not participate, even a speck of rust should not be present at the meet," he told reporters here, spelling out his party's tough stand on the issue.

The 90-year-old DMK patriarch also cautioned the Congress that if the Prime Minister participates, "his party has to face the consequences."

Mr Karunanidhi said that the Congress legislators in Tamil Nadu have supported the unanimous resolution passed by the state Assembly, demanding that India boycott CHOGM and noted, "Those who sow, will reap it also."

Asked about rumours that Congress leader and Shipping Minister G K Vasan was mulling resignation from the Ministry over the issue, Mr Karunanidhi said he was not aware of it and can reply only after receiving proper communication.

The Congress had aligned with the DMK in Tamil Nadu for the last two Lok Sabha elections since 2004. Though the DMK snapped its alliance with the UPA on the Sri Lankan Tamils issue in March, it continues to maintain its political ties with the Congress and drummed up the national party's support for its candidate Kanimozhi in the Rajya Sabha elections.

Meanwhile, Mr Vasan met Prime Minister Singh in Delhi today and appealed to him not to participate in the CHOGM.

Speaking to reporters in Delhi, he said, "I met the Prime Minister and requested him that India should not take part in CHOGM. I have also referred to the resolution passed by the Tamil Nadu Assembly."

PTI

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