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Karuna defends Kanimozhi

Tiruvarur: Defending daughter Kanimozhi, jailed in the 2G scam case, DMK chief M Karunanidhi today said it was he who insisted on her being a shareholder in Kalaignar TV, to which the money related to the spectrum allocation was routed.

"Kanimozhi`s mistake is my mistake. It was I who compelled her to become a shareholder in Kalaignar TV with a view to settle her a base for her future," he said addressing a public meeting in his native constituency.

The 88-year-old former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister claimed that CBI, which is probing the case, had named his daughter, a Rajya Sabha member, since it had to hold someone accountable.

"What was earlier estimated to be a loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crore (caused to the exchequer by the alleged wrongful policies of jailed former Telecom Minster A Raja), has now shrunk to Rs 30,000 crore. What affected the company (Kalaignar TV) affected Kanimozhi," he said.

Kanimozhi, whom he said had taken all efforts for the party`s victory in the April 13 Assembly polls, was "languishing in Tihar jail," in conditions not so favourable.

"The temperature there is such that a flower will dry in 10 minutes if it is kept in the open," Karunanidhi, who had met his daughter recently there, said.

He, however, said that his daughter was facing the situation and had asked his elder daughter Selvi to take care of him.

"She said she was not worried and asked us not to worry as the Dravidian movement had given her the strength," he said.

Karunanidhi said before "sorrow destroys" him, he will do all in his might to save and nurture the Dravidian movement.

Kanimozhi, a minority stake-holder in the channel, has been jailed over transaction of Rs 200 crore from 2G accused Shahid Balwa`s firm, DB Realty.

While the DMK patriarch started mentioning about his retirement from active politics, he quickly changed track and said that he would not quit from public life (as of now).

On his party`s recent electoral loss at the hands of arch-rival AIADMK, he said this would allow the party to sharpen and strengthen the Dravidian ideals and policies.

Charging a section of media with carrying reports targeting his family, Karunanidhi said he was aware of the conspiracy behind these, but warned nothing would destroy the Dravidian movement.

Taking exception to Jayalalithaa government`s proposal to scrap previous DMK regime`s initiatives such as stopping construction on the new Assembly-Secretariat complex, he said that it was not an initiative meant against her.

Though Jayalalithaa had proposed to shift the Assembly building elsewhere to Kotturpuram during her 2001-06 regime, DMK had, however, chosen the sprawling Omandurar Government Estate to house the new Legislative Assembly-Secretariat complex.

"Fort St George is a British era construction and we wanted to run the Assembly in a building built by a government in independent India," he said.

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