Govt must not dump new secretariat-assembly: MDMK

Last Updated: Tue, May 17, 2011 10:26 hrs

Chennai: Estranged ally of the AIADMK, MDMK, on Tuesday urged the Jayalalithaa-led government to not to dump the new secretariat-assembly complex that is still under construction, saying it was being built from taxpayers' money.

"If the government decides to function from the St George Fort, rejecting buildings (being) constructed on taxpayers' money, a question arises if the same fate would apply to other structures such as court complexes and Collectors' offices built by erstwhile governments," a resolution passed in the meeting of party's Parliamentary Board and District Secretaries said.

While holding that the construction of the Rs 750 crore structure was taken up in "haste" and one which had exceeded the cost estimates, the party however insisted taxpayers' money was being used to fund its construction.

"It is not acceptable to change the Assembly. It should continue in the same building", the resolution said.

The new secretariat-assembly complex, perceived to be a pet project of former Chief Minister and DMK president M Karunanidhi, is under construction but it was inaugurated last year by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in the presence of UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi.

Budget sessions were held in the sprawling assembly building but the new Secretariat is yet to completely house all departments.

Jayalalithaa, the then Opposition leader, has vowed not to step into the structure, dismissing the aesthetics and design of the building as resembling a "circus tent".

MDMK members passed a resolution that the newly elected AIADMK government should focus on solving issues such as inter-state water disputes involving Kerala (Mullaperiyar dam dispute) and Karnataka (Cauvery water dispute).

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