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Panneerselvam asks TN CM Stalin to call all-party meeting on Mullaperiyar issue

Panneerselvam, who is from the Tamil Nadu-Kerala border region where the Mullaperiyar dam is situated, asked Chief Minister M K Stalin to take the matter to the Supreme Court and not hold any more talks with the neighbouring state.

Written by Arun Janardhanan | Chennai |
November 14, 2021 12:36:21 am
The Kerala government had recently granted permission to the Tamil Nadu government to cut 15 trees downstream of the Mullaperiyar baby dam to strengthen the structure. It then withdrew the permission after a political storm. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Bipinkdas at Malayalam Wikipedia)

AIADMK coordinator O Panneerselvam urged the Tamil Nadu government to convene an all-party meeting and take a unanimous decision on the Mullaperiyar issue following the Kerala government’s revocation of permission for strengthening the dam.

Panneerselvam, who is from the Tamil Nadu-Kerala border region where the Mullaperiyar dam is situated, asked Chief Minister M K Stalin to take the matter to the Supreme Court and not hold any more talks with the neighbouring state.

The Kerala government had recently granted permission to the Tamil Nadu government to cut 15 trees downstream of the Mullaperiyar baby dam to strengthen the structure. It then withdrew the permission after a political storm.

Panneerselvam’s letter said the Supreme Court had ruled that Kerala should not interfere in strengthening the baby dam.

Taking a dig at DMK’s alliance partners in Tamil Nadu, which includes Kerala’s ruling party CPI(M), Panneerselvam’s letter said there seems to be an impression that DMK and its alliance partners were supportive of Kerala. He reminded that elected representatives including MLAs and MPs should raise their voice for state’s rights.

The DMK government “silence in the issue was equal to surrendering the interests of the state,” said the letter.

Panneerselvam’s letter said Kerala’s principal chief conservator of forest, who was suspended for granting the permission, was actually following SC directions.

After Kerala granted permission, CM Stalin had thanked his counterpart in Kerala. But soon, owing to pressure from the opposition parties, the Kerala government cancelled the order. Panneerselvam asked why Stalin was silent after this development. “Why are DMK and allies hesitant to speak? Isn’t it betraying Tamils and Tamil Nadu when they keep quiet on Tamil Nadu’s lifeline issue?” he said.

While Stalin did not make a statement, Tamil Nadu Water Resources Minister S Durai Murugan said they do not want to take a confrontational path with Kerala. Murugan said the action taken against an officer was difficult to believe as “the order did not only grant permission to remove 15 trees but had specifically marked and named each of them”.

“What kind of an administration is that?” Murugan asked, adding that such a detailed order cannot happen without the consent and knowledge of the concerned ministers.

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