Chennai: Chief minister J. Jayalalithaa has decided to skip the conference of chief ministers on internal security being chaired by the Prime Minister at New Delhi on Wednesday, pointing out that the CMs were being given “very little opportunity” to express their views at such meets that were reduced to being mere “annual ritualistic exercise”.
In a letter to the PM on Tuesday, copies of which were made available to the media, she acknowledged the invitation from the Union home minister for the present conference, which “no doubt is a very important event since it concerns the primary function of the state, viz, maintenance of public order”.
But then, like all such conferences chaired by the PM, this one too had “a long and weighty agenda of 12 subjects” and even uttering just their titles would take ten minutes, the time being “cavalierly allotted” to each CM to present his/her views, Jayalalithaa said.
She said the UPA government had reduced even such important conferences “to a routinised ritual rather than a consultative process, with the chief ministers constantly guillotined to cut short their speeches”, despite the fact that they were equal partners in the governance of the country.
The CMs would expect to be able to make meaningful contributions to the discussions and make the Centre aware of the true situation on the ground. “Only this will enable us to formulate policies and allocate resources based on real need”, she argued.
She said the current conference too appeared aimed at “merely assembling” all the CMs to “rubber stamp” measures pre-decided by the Centre.
Recalling her experience at the National Development Council meet last December when she was forced to cut short her speech by the guillotine bell after the allotted ten minutes, the CM said rather than attending a conference where CMs would be “railroaded to finish their speeches within 10 minutes and to merely lay a speech on the table”, she was deputing senior minister K.P. Munu-samy to deliver her speech and it could be taken on record.
“I have given the most earnest consideration of all the agenda items and my speech gives the detailed views of Tamil Nadu on all the subjects listed in the agenda”, Jayalalithaa told the PM in her hard-hitting letter that is bound to trigger a fresh debate on the callous manner in which the Centre has been treating some of the non-Congress states in recent times.
Re-posted from DECCAN Chronicle
- CM to skip internal security meet (thehindu.com)
- Jayaalithaa resents 10-minute limit, skips CMs’ meet (vancouverdesi.com)
- Jayalalithaa to skip CM’s conference on Internal Security (thehindu.com)
- Jaya to skip Chief Ministers’ conference on internal security (ibnlive.in.com)