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A Raja 'threatens' Centre, demands autonomy for TN

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Chennai, July 04: Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) leader A Raja stirred a row after he warned the Centre 'not to compel' the party to resurrect the demand for a separate Tamil Nadu.

While speaking in a meeting held for DMK local body representatives in Namakkal titled 'Autonomy for States, Federalism in Centre', Raja, in the presence of chief minister M K Stalin said, "We will not stop our fight until Tamil Nadu gets state autonomy.''

A Raja

''We are not talking here with arrogance saying that we rule in Tamil Nadu. The DMK has abandoned separate Tamil Nadu demand & is now demanding state autonomy,''he said.

"Though we follow the path of Periyar, we kept aside the demand for a separate Tamil Nadu for national integrity and democracry," he continued, adding that he humbly requests Prime Minister Narendra Modi and home minister Amit Shah not to force TN to revive their demand.

The DMK MP further alleged that the Centre enjoyed great powers and made the state powerless and at the mercy of the Union government. He also highlighted that while TN's share of GST contribution was 6.5 %, but the state got just 2.5% in return. "Even for simple issues, states have to depend on the centre," he said.

Raja's statement assumes significance as states like Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh have repeatedly sought greater autonomy from the Centre on many issues.

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