Jaya seeks PM's intervention in dam issue

Jaya seeks PM's intervention in dam issue

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalitha urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to intervene into various deterrents plaguing the state, like the Mullaperiyar dam issue. Singh is on a two-day visit to the state, his first since the present AIADMK government assumed power.

The chief minister visited Singh at the Raj Bhavan to discuss the issues with Singh, who received a warm welcome from DMK and Congress leaders at the Chennai airport earlier in the day.

Jayalalitha handed over a 18 page memorandum to Singh during their interaction, which, among others, urged him to  “advise the Kerala government to honour the Supreme Court order to raise the water level in the Mullaperiyar dam from the present 136 feet to 142 feet” and “not to venture into constructing a new dam since the retrofitted Mullaperiyar dam is safe and functioning well.” Jayalalitha also sought deployment of CISF personnel in the Mullaperiyar dam area.

This apart, the CM took up the issue of indiscriminate attacks on Tamil Nadu fishermen by the Sri lankan navy, in the Palk Bay. To ensure their safety and security, the government “must take up this issue strongly in the forthcoming talks with Sri Lanka to be held in January 2012,” she urged.

Emphasising on the “debt trap” looming large over Tamil Nadu, the CM advocated special assistance packages to help the state emerge out of the financial crisis.

This apart, Jayalalitha sought financial packages to facilitate annual dredging of the fishing harbours,  release of nearly Rs 3862 crore towards compensation for phasing out Central Sales Tax (CST), a special aid to bail out Tamil Nadu Electricity Board, incentives for developing non-conventional energy sources and long-term coal linkages for new thermal power projects.

Request to Centre

She also requested for an additional 1,000 Mega Watt of electricity from the Central pool to Tamil Nadu, to help tide over a severe power crisis. However, the memorandum had no mention of the start-up works for the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project. Hours before the PM arrived in Chennai, the film fraternity held a rally on the Marina beach condemning the Centre’s attitude in tackling the Mullaperiyar issue.

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