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Karuna, Manmohan meet, say DMK- Cong ties strong

Chennai: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi on Monday said Congress-DMK alliance was `strong`, seeking to end the speculations on the ties between the two UPA allies amid signs of strain against the backdrop of the 2G Spectrum scam.

“Well, the alliance remains as strong as ever,” Dr. Singh told reporters when asked for his assessment on relations between the Congress and the DMK shortly after their 30-minute meeting at the Raj Bhavan.

Dr. Singh said he discussed with Mr. Karunanidhi the flood situation in Tamil Nadu, the Adyar Park environmental clearance and the relations between the UPA allies.

Mr. Karunanidhi also said the ties between the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and Congress were `strong`.

“It is as strong as the ties between you (media) and me,” he told reporters after meeting Dr. Singh for over 30 minutes at the Raj Bhavan in Chennai.

Asked whether the 2G spectrum scam had affected the ties, he replied in the negative.

This is the first meeting between the two leaders after A. Raja, a DMK representative, resigned as Telecom Minister from the Union Cabinet in the wake of the scam.

Mr. Karunanidhi, who was scheduled to meet Dr. Singh last night, could not do so as he was ‘pre-occupied’ in a meeting to release a volume of poems of his friend, noted Tamil lyricist Vairamuthu.

He said this morning that his scheduled meeting last night did not take place as many speakers addressed the function.

Asked whether he was upset over the Environment Ministry not clearing the State government’s eco—park in the city, Mr. Karunanidhi said, ‘No’.

During the meeting, Mr. Karunanidhi submitted a detailed memorandum to Dr. Singh on the damage caused by the rains last month in several districts of the State. He said he had requested the Prime Minister to quickly sanction funds for relief and rehabilitation.

Dr. Singh, who reached Chennai last night, would inaugurate the 98th edition of the Indian Science Congress at SRM University at suburban Kattankulathur.

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