Chennai: In a scathing criticism of the ruling AIADMK regime on all fronts, DMK top leader M K Stalin today alleged that Ministers of Chief Minister O Panneerselvam’s Cabinet had turned into “extortionists” and charged that Tamil Nadu was in the “Intensive Care Unit”.
In an open letter to Panneerselvam, Stalin said, “Government employees are being driven to suicide because Ministers have turned into extortionists. This, Thiru. Paneerselvam, is the Tamil Nadu of today.” In February, Agricultural Engineering Executive Engineer S Muthukumarasam, committed suicide. “Agri” S Krishnamurthy was removed later as Agriculture Minister and dropped from party posts he held.
A CB-CID inquiry was ordered following allegations that the official killed himself due to pressure exerted allegedly by Krishnamurthy over the issue of appointments of some drivers. “Your ministers who are supposed to govern Tamil Nadu spend every day carrying milk pots, performing poojas and walking on fire for the release of your leader,” Stalin said referring to the spate of prayers in places of worship for the welfare of AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa.
Stating that Panneerselvam and his Cabinet colleagues were blissfully unaware of the state of affairs in Tamil Nadu, he said, “There used to be a time” when the biggest companies and industrial houses were keen to come to a healthy and vibrant Tamil Nadu. “Today, Tamil Nadu is in the ICU and its vital signs are a cause for extreme concern. From being one of the top threeinvestment destinations in India, today it has become one of the top three states from which companies are running away in desperation. Foxconn and Nokia left because of the government’s lack of support,” he alleged.
“Hyundai, Ford, Saint Gobain and many others have decided to take their expansion up in other states. Small scale and tiny industries have been dying for the past four years.” He also alleged that the Global Investors Meet was postponed twice because the state “does not have the right Chief Minister to meet the delegates”. “You have spent 100 crores of people’s money to invite companies from many countries, you had promised to bring in investments worth Rs 76,000 crores,” he said
Alleging that 70 per cent of graduates were unable to find jobs, he said “you are in the process of destroying the dreams of millions of young people.” “There have been no major infrastructure projects, the government lacks vision and progress has come to a standstill.” He listed out several other allegations including what he called increase of crime to frightening levels especially against women and children and electricity shortage and rampamt corruption.
“Bus drivers, teachers, noon meal workers, physically challenged persons have all made desperate pleas to address their long standing requests but the government is scared to talk to them without directions from Poes Garden,” he said. AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa residence is situated in the upscale Poes Garden here. Stating that the Panneerselvam “cannot punish Tamil Nadu as his party leader had been punished for corruption,” he asked if his government would “wake up” now in its last year of existence. “Will you at least now try to make an attempt to address people’s needs?,” he asked. “Is your first duty and loyalty towards the people of Tamil Nadu or to your convicted leader? I challenge you to honestly answer this question.”