Karunanidhi opposes training of Sri Lankan defence personnel

Last Updated: Mon, Aug 27, 2012 12:09 hrs
M Karunanidhi supports extension of ban on Tamil Tigers

Chennai: Criticising the UPA government for continuing to allow training of Sri Lankan defence personnel in the country despite opposition to it in Tamil Nadu, DMK, a key ally of the ruling front, today said India should immediately stop such exercises.

The Centre was adopting the same approach on the training issue as in the case of recurring attacks on Tamil Nadu fishermen allegedly by Sri Lankan Naval personnel, DMK chief M Karunanidhi told reporters here.

"Sri Lankan defence personnel are sent to some other states whenever we protest but are allowed to continue training after some days," he said apparently referring to recent shifting of some Sri Lankan Airforce personnel from IAF's base near here to Bangalore.

He recalled that the recently-held Tamil Eelam Supporters Organisation (TESO) conference, a pro-Sri Lankan Tamils outfit founded by him, had adopted a resolution insisting Sri Lankan defence personnel should not be given training in any part of the country.

He said DMK MPs had also handed over a copy of the resolution to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

"Despite these efforts, the training programme is happening. The Centre should not continue this attitude and take up strongly the issue along with attack on Indian fishermen with Sri Lanka", he said.

Karunanidhi's demand comes two days after Chief Minister Jayalalithaa shot off a strongly-worded letter to the Prime Minister opposing the training given to two Sri Lankan defence personnel in the Defence Service Staff College at Wellington in Nilgiris district, saying the Centre's attitude on the issue was "reprehensible".

Political parties in Tamil Nadu have been opposing imparting of training to Sri Lankan personnel saying it hurt the sentiments of Tamils in view of war crime charges against the island forces during the final battle against LTTE in 2009.

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