A day after Amit Shah presented his list of the centre’s contribution to Tamil Nadu, Chief Minister MK Stalin said: “Amit Shah did not answer any of my questions”, sparking another war of words with the ruling party at the centre.
It all started on Saturday when Amit Shah arrived in Chennai for his Sunday public rally in Vellore on 9 years of Modi rule. At a public rally in Salem district, Mr. Stalin had challenged the interior minister to list special projects that the BJP had brought to the state over the past nine years.
Responding to MK Stalin’s challenge, Amit Shah listed the contribution of the union government to the southern state. He claimed that the center allocated 2.47 lakh crore to the state in 9 years against 95,000 crore during the 10-year rule of the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government and released 72,000 crore for Chennai metro.
Mr Shah said 56 lakh farmers from Tamil Nadu received Rs 6,000 from the center every year. 84 lakh drinking water connections were built in the state, 2 crore people were treated under the Ayush plan, 62.5 lakh toilets were built for the poor and two Vande Bharat trains for the state, Mr. Shah added.
MK Stalin brushed these aside, however, saying that this is “a constitutional duty of the union government towards all states and that Tamil Nadu would have received it even if another government was in power”.
He added, “My question is clear, what are the special arrangements that the BJP has brought to Tamil Nadu?”
His list of special arrangements for the state by the UPA government led by Dr. Manmohan Singh included Chennai Metro Rail, Chennai Desalination Plant, Sethusamudram Project, 2 Central Universities including one in Thiruvarur, Tamil Classical Language Status, Sidha Institute, Tamil Classical Institute among others.
MK Stalin pointed out that the BJP government had not even completed the AIIMS hospital in Madurai after 8 years. “It doesn’t have the heart to release money for Tamil Nadu,” he said.
Amit Shah did not give a timeline for the completion of the project, but asked why the DMK did not hospitalize the AIIMS when it shared power at the center for nine years.
Mr. Stalin countered that: “Our healthcare system was too good, we didn’t need AIIMS hospital. We are asking now because it was the BJP government that announced it”.
On Sunday, Amit Shah took aim at the ruling DMK and its ally, the Congress, calling them “2G, 3G, 4G” parties and saying that in Tamil Nadu it is time to throw them out and give power to a ” son of the ground”. “.