Day after Enforcement Directorate arrested Tamil Nadu electricity and excise minister Senthilbalaji, chief minister M K Stalin has warned the BJP against trying to browbeat the DMK.
“You won’t be able to face the repercussions if you try to intimidate us … This isn’t a threat, but a warning,” Stalin said in a video released on Thursday.
“We will not bend if you attempt to threaten us. We will stand tall and face you,’’ Stalin said.
Stalin said the saffron party should act responsibly henceforth and end its ‘autocratic acts.’
“Every DMK man is groomed like a rubber ball that will bounce back with more rigour,” he added.
“You cannot beat me. Because if I give it back, you wouldn’t be able to bear it,” Stalin said, quoting from the late DMK patriarch and his father M Karunanidhi’s famous speech. Stalin said that his party is not simply a vehicle for political power but “a platform for an ideology that we hold dear.”
தி.மு.க.காரர்களைச் சீண்டிப் பார்க்க வேண்டாம். எங்களுக்கும் எல்லா அரசியலும் தெரியும். இது மிரட்டல் அல்ல; எச்சரிக்கை! pic.twitter.com/MTA0suBkSh— M.K.Stalin (@mkstalin) June 15, 2023
“This ideology is our priority, and we are committed to protecting it at all costs until our final breath. A glance at Dravidian history will help you understand our unyielding dedication. If your politics are driven by hatred, we will gather in strength to resist you. Our stance against the imposition of Hindi provides just one example of our resistance. There are no protests or struggles that we shy away from. I urge you to study history and understand the DMK’s long-standing legacy of resistance, or you can turn to the senior politicians in Delhi for a refresher,” Stalin said.
There was not even an iota of doubt that the action on Senthilbalaji was an act of political vendetta, said the DMK chief.
“It is BJP’s method to unleash the CBI, the income tax department and the Enforcement Directorate to intimidate political opponents who cannot be taken on politically and ideologically,” he said.
“Only after his health worsened and he developed chest pain, they took him to hospital. If they were lethargic even after that, it would have posed a life threat to Senthilbalaji,’’ Stalin said.
“What is the hurry for such an inquiry? Is the country in an undeclared emergency? ED’s actions resemble an emergency,” he said.
“The BJP is not ready to face the people, neither are people ready to trust BJP. So the BJP wants to play its politics through the ED,” he added.
Stalin went on to say: “They did so in TN too by conducting searches at the then AIADMK ministers to subdue the AIADMK. But they are bound to get disappointed if they expect the same with the DMK.”
“When Shiv Sena opposed, they arrested Sanjay Rawat in Maharashtra. When AAP opposed it, they arrested Manish Sisodia in Delhi. When Rashtriya Janata Dal opposed, raids were conducted in places linked to Tejashwi Yadav, this is Bihar,” said CM Stalin
“In 10 years of ED before the BJP coming to power, the number of such raids was just 112. After the BJP came to power, 3,000 raids have happened now. And the conviction rate of these raids is just .05%,” he said.
Stalin, a vocal critic of Hindutva, said that DMK had faced tougher challenges in the past and would tide over this phase too and emerge victorious in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.
“We will get past this and win all the 40 seats,” he said.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) arrested Tamil Nadu Power and Excise Minister V Senthilbalaji on Wednesday after conducting searches at premises linked to him in connection with a money laundering case.