Jayalalithaa decides to skip CMs’ conference, says it is an annual, ritualistic exercise

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June 5, 2013

CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa has decided to skip the Chief Ministers' conference on internal security organized by the Centre in New Delhi on Wednesday, saying that they were being "railroaded" to finish their speeches within ten minutes.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister – J. Jayalalithaa

June 5, 2013

CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa has decided to skip the Chief Ministers' conference on internal security organized by the Centre in New Delhi on Wednesday, saying that they were being "railroaded" to finish their speeches within ten minutes.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister – J. Jayalalithaa

Describing the conference as an annual ritualistic exercise, Jayalalithaa said she will depute municipal administration minister K P Munuswamy to attend the conference on her behalf. Besides minister Munuswamy, the home secretary and the DGP would also attend the conference.

"This conference has become an annual ritualistic exercise where very little opportunity is given to chief ministers to express their views on the items on the agenda," she said in a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

"The current exercise too seems to be aimed at merely assembling the CMs of states to rubber stamp some measures pre-decided by the government of India without adequately considering the views of the states", she said.

Pointing out that the conference carried a long and weighty agenda of 12 subjects, the chief minister said uttering just their titles would in itself take 10 minutes, "which unfortunately, is the time being cavalierly allotted to chief ministers to present their views".

"The CMs are taken for granted and treated casually as was apparent at the last NDC meeting held on December 27 last year when I was forced to cut short my speech midway by a so-called time restriction, effected in a humiliating manner by ringing a bell," Jayalalithaa said.

As chief ministers of democratically elected state governments, they were equal partners with the Union government and expect to be able to make meaningful contributions to the discussions so that the Centre is made aware of the true situation on the ground, Jayalalithaa said.

"Only this will enable us to formulate policies and allocate resources based on real need. Under the present dispensation at the Centre, the conferences with chief ministers on important issues have been reduced to a routine ritual, rather than a consultative process, with chief ministers being constantly guillotined to cut short their speeches," she said.

"I have given the most earnest consideration to all the items on the agenda and my speech gives the detailed views of Tamil Nadu on all the subjects listed. The Minister will deliver my speech at the conference, which may kindly be taken on record," the chief minister added.


Courtesy: PTI