Stalin’s strong statement in Mekedatu issue after meeting Prez

Tamilnadu Chief Minister M K Stalin on Monday ruled out scope for talks with Karnataka over the Mekedatu dam issue.

Based on the Centre’s assurances, his government is confident that Karnataka cannot go ahead in its initiative and legal options would also be pursued in the dam matter, Stalin told reporters in the national capital after calling on President Ram Nath Kovind.

Stalin said the Tamilnadu government has decided to commemorate the centenary of the Assembly, set up in 1921 and known then as the Madras Legislative Council, which was the first elected body of the then Madras Presidency.

The Chief Minister said he requested the President to preside over the commemoration of the centenary of the first elected House of people which he accepted and the event would also see the unveiling of the portrait of former Chief Minister M Karunanidhi in the Assembly.

Kovind also has agreed to lay the foundation stones for a library in Madurai, and in Chennai, a government hospital and a pillar to commemorate 75 years of independence, he said, adding, the President said he would give his appointment for the proposed event in a couple of days.

Asked if he took up any Tamil Nadu related issues with Kovind like the NEET or release of the seven Rajiv Gandhi assassination case convicts, he replied in the negative.

On the issue of convicts, Stalin said he wrote to Kovind seeking their release as soon as he assumed office in May as the Chief Minister.

‘The matter is in court, we have to pursue legal measures and we will continue to raise our voice (seeking their release),’ he said.

On Karnataka exerting pressure on Centre over the Mekedatu dam issue, Stalin said he had sought steps against the neighbouring state’s bid to build a reservoir across Cauvery when he met Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently.