In the continuing war of words with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa on Tuesday accused him of "taking the entire Tamil race for a ride" over the visit of a MPs team to Sri Lanka to study conditions of Internally Displaced Tamils in camps.
Describing the 10-member delegation as a team of "assorted politicians" from parties propping up the "minority government" in Tamil Nadu, she said, "Karunanidhi has confessed the truth and the delegation is not an all-party one. It was never intended to be. That is why opposition parties were not invited to join it."
The visit of the delegation, comprising MPs from DMK and its allies, Congress and Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi, has been embroiled in a controversy over omission of opposition MPs.
Karunanidhi, who had defended the visit, saying it was not sponsored by the Centre and expenses were borne by the parties themselves, and Jayalalithaa, have been locked in a verbal duel over the issue. The delegation is now in Sri Lanka.
Jayalalithaa in a statement here said, "the outcome of the visit can well be conjectured. They will be taken on a guided tour of specific Tamil areas where the oppression of the Sri Lankan government is apparently minimal.'
On return, the delegation was likely to say there is a huge problem in the hands of Sri Lankan government, which was earnestly trying to resettle nearly four lakh persons and that Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse had given a solemn assurance he would do his best in the least possible time, Jayalalithaa said.
"With this exercise, Karunanidhi hoped to take the entire Tamil race for a ride. But what would happen to the half-century-old fight of Sri Lankan Tamils for self determination?
What will happen to notorious 'Sinhala only' policy?', she asked.