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Maran breaks silence, will support UPA

July 20, 2008 17:12 IST

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Dayanidhi Maran, dissident Dravida Munnettra Kazhagam Member of Parliament and estranged grand nephew of Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, on Sunday said that he would vote for the confidence motion and support Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images].

"I am basically a DMK man and hence will abide by the party's decision. People have given a mandate to the United Progressive Alliance to rule the country for five years and my voters have given me a mandate to support the government. Hence I will be supporting the UPA and will cast my vote in favour of the confidence motion," he said.

Maran told a crowded press conference that "Manmohan Singh is leading the country in a good way. Congress president Sonia Gandhi [Images] is advising him well. I want the continuance of the UPA government. I will vote for the UPA".

He said Sonia Gandhi, Union Ministers Pranab Mukherjee, Lalu Prasad, Kamal Nath and Jayaram Ramesh spoke to him seeking his support, but none of the DMK leaders bothered to call him.

Asked whether there was possibility of any rapprochement between his and Karunanidhi's families, Maran said "I do not know. But a coterie around my leader (Karunanidhi) is not allowing it".

However, he regretted the attitude of some DMK men towards him and his relatives. "The party has not yet told why I was asked to resign from the union cabinet and what mistake I and my brother (Kalanidhi Maran) committed. We were not even allowed to meet our granduncle (Karunanidhi) on his birthday," he said.

Maran said he was quite surprised that leaders in Delhi have not utilised the experience of Karunanidhi to deal with the current political crisis.

"I could say I am quite upset, disturbed... that leaders in Delhi have not utilised Kalaingar's experience. They have not utilised it... He could have negotiated in a better way with the leaders and sorted out the crisis," Maran said.

"Karunanidhi would have handled the situation in a different manner and resolved the crisis," Maran said.

Asked to name the leaders who did not utilse Karunanidhi's experiences, Maran just said, "All the leaders."

Asked whether Karunanidhi's elder son M K Azhagiri was the 'stumbling-block for the rapprochement', he told a press conference that he would not blame Azhagiri.

"Did I put up candidates in 18 constituencies to defeat DMK nominees including the then Speaker (P T R Palanivelrajan) in 2001?" he said in an indirect attack on Azhagiri, apparently referring to candidates backed by Azhagiri causing the defeat of DMK candidates then.

He said despite being treated shabbily by the DMK leadership, he had not done anything against the party. "During the presidential and vice-presidential polls, I voted for the candidates supported by the party".

He said he had contributed his might to the formation of the UPA. "I will do my duty to save the government because I am the son of Murasoli Maran. I will abide by the decision of the party on which I was elected".

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