- Published on Friday, 04 May 2012 13:58
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The Indian daily Telegraph India has said that the Tamil chauvinist Karunanidhi is attempting to promote Tamil Elam only as a tactic to divert attention from the succession war between his sons Stalin and Alagiri for the leadership of the DMK party.
This week Karunanidhi chaired a meeting of the Tamil Eelam Supporters' Organisation (TESO), an outfit he had founded in the 1980s but which had remained dormant since he dumped the Eelam demand for political expediency after Rajiv Gandhi's assassination in 1991.
Recently this Tamil chauvinist has demanded an UN-sponsored referendum among Lankan Tamils to establish an Eelam on the lines of South Sudan, which voted last year to split from the north.
The Indian newspaper says that what has intrigued observers is the timing of Karunanidhi's new-found love for the Eelam cause. The LTTE has been defeated, Tamil parties in Sri Lanka are keener to wrest more provincial powers under the Lankan Constitution.
The paper quoting Tamil Nadu politicians said that for Karunanidhi, Eelam becomes visible only when he is in the Opposition. The paper points out that Karunanidhi remained Delhi's willing and silent ally while the Lankan army eliminated the tiger terrorists in 2009, and this factor exposes the hollowness behind his present interest in Eelam.
They have also pointed out that between 2006 and 2011, when pro-LTTE parties demanded more effective intervention by India, Karunanidhi, then in power in the Tamil Nadu State, had declared that the Centre's line - backing the Lanka crackdown on the Tamil Tigers - was the DMK's as well. At that time, they say, Karunanidhi, whose party shares power at the Centre, even urged pro-LTTE voices to tone down the anti-Sinhala rhetoric lest it fanned anger against Tamils in Sri Lanka.
They further point out that when Jayalalithaa, during the 2009 Lok Sabha campaign, raised the pitch on Sri Lanka's war against Tamils and promised to send the Indian Army to save them, the same Karunanidhi had accused her of politicising the issue.
Meanwhile Tamil Nadu political analysts state that Congress leaders view Karunanidhi’s sudden love for Eelam as a possible exit plan out of the UPA. They say that Karunanidhi probably feels that rather than fight the 2014 (Lok Sabha) elections with a discredited Congress, he might align with other parties like the Left, Vaiko and Vijayakanth, and the Lankan Tamil issue has never had an impact on elections in the state. (niz).