Ruling DMK on Friday sharply criticised the LTTE for not responding to the 48-hour ceasefire declared by the Sri Lankan government in the Vanni region to evacuate large number of civilian Tamils caught in the figthing between the island army and the Tigers.
The LTTE had had not given any word on the safe passage of Tamils in the conflict zone, Tamil Nadu Finance Minister and DMK General Secretary K Anbazhagan said in the state Assembly.
Replying to a mention by Congress Whip S Peter Alphones in this regard, he said even after last night's announcement of the ceasfire by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, LTTE leader V Prabakaran and his cadres did not come forward to reciprocate it.
"If Sri Lankan government could say that it will save the Tamils after India's intervention, why the LTTE had not shown any response to that?" he asked.
UN agencies had also welcomed the temporary ceasfire by the Sri Lanka government, said Anbhazhagan, who fielded questions from the members on the issue for the second day in the absence of Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, who is indisposed. He wondered why the LTTE had not yet allowed the people a safe passage from the war zone.
He said many people took shelter on the LTTE side thinking that they would be safer. "But unfortunately, the Tamils are getting killed in the cross fire between the Sri Lankan Army and the LTTE," he added.
Anbazhagan said the recent visit of External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee to the island nation was the first step to save the Tamils living there.
"This is the first step the Centre had taken to save Tamils in the island nation. We should try to take more such steps in bringing a sustained peace atmosphere for Tamils living there," he said.