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Cong-DMK muscle-flexing on seat-sharing a farce

Chennai: AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa on Thursday derided the "muscle-flexing" between Congress and DMK over seat sharing for the April 13 Assembly polls as a "farce and drama", saying it was an attempt to make people forget the 2G scam.

"People are made to forget about price rise and a myriad of other problems. All this muscle-flexing is mere drama," she said in a hard-hitting statement here, two days after DMK and Congress clinched a seat-sharing deal after tough bargaining.

Jayalalithaa also slammed the DMK`s threat to pull out its ministers from the Union Cabinet during the seat-sharing negotiations, saying Karunanidhi never threatened to pull on important issues concerning the public.

She said such threats were never held out when "hapless, innocent Tamils were massacred" in Sri Lanka; when Karnataka refuses to give Tamil Nadu its due share of Cauvery water and when Kerala refuses to implement the Supreme Court directive on Mullaperiyar dam issue.

She said Karunanidhi had also never threatened to withdraw from the government when the Centre repeatedly hiked petroleum prices precipitating a cascading effect on the prices of all products and when Indian fishermen were "massacred".

"He merely sent letters to the Prime Minister (on such issues), without taking any action," she said.

But when Karunanidhi wanted "plum ministerial" postings for his children and "sundry relatives", when his near and dear ones were likely to be picked up by the CBI for siphoning away national resources, he would put up a show of bravado citing some other reasons, Jayalalithaa said.

The Congress leadership would also put up a show of defiance to fool its innocent grassroots cadres and then capitulate giving the impression that the week-long face-off was for the sake of two or three legislature seats, she said.

"The poor Congress cadres in the state have to go around, from door to door, canvassing votes for the very people who have been the cause for so much embarrassment to them and their leaders," she said.

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