Chennai, Sept 25: Not have the "moral right" to talk about the dry regime, a comment which sparked heated exchange between the arch rivals in the Tamil Nadu Assembly.
Electricity Minister R Viswanathan, who also holds the Prohibition and Excise portfolio, said DMK had "no qualification and moral right" to demand the dry regime since party president M Karunanidhi as Chief Minister at different points of time, had defended not implementing prohibition.
His remarks drew instant response DMK whose members were involved in heated exchange with the Treasury benches, with some of the opposition MLAs even arguing with Speaker P Dhanapal.
Soon, the DMK members staged a walkout, with Dhanapal expressing displeasure over their 'behaviour'. He said the DMK MLAs routinely engaged in heated exchange and then staged walkout under some pretexts or other.
"This is not proper," he added. After their exit, Viswanathan continued his tirade against Karunanidhi, recalling the various statements made by the DMK chief in the Assembly on availability of liquor.
Karunanidhi had argued against prohibition many times on the floor of the House, the Minister said recalling the former's statement in this regard where he had said how can Tamil Nadu "protect itself as an unlit camphor even while being surrounded by a ring of fire", in an apparent reference to no prohibition being implemented in neighbouring states.
"Therefore, DMK has no qualification and moral right" to demand prohibition, he said.