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Lines blur in Lanka heartburn

Chennai, March 28: M. Karunanidhi and P. Chidambaram are speaking almost the same language on Sri Lanka.

DMK president Karunanidhi today condemned India’s decision to abstain from voting on the US-sponsored resolution against Sri Lanka at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

Finance minister and Congress leader Chidambaram said India should have voted for the resolution. Chidambaram’s “personal” opinion came at a time his son is contesting the general election from Tamil Nadu.

Referring to his recent election speech on Wednesday, where he had hinted that the DMK may give a “general amnesty” to the Congress after its betrayal in the past, Karunanidhi said: “Its latest decision to abstain from voting on the UNHRC resolution appears to have closed the Tamil doors for the Congress permanently.

“When a country like the US, which was not affected by the war in Sri Lanka, has sponsored a resolution thrice against that country for the sake of upholding human rights, and 23 other countries which do not have any Tamilian roots have voted for it, India’s abstention is akin to a mother killing her own child,” he alleged.

He challenged India’s argument that the resolution was intrusive as it interfered in the internal affairs of another nation.

Karunanidhi wondered: “If India had followed a policy of non-interference in another country’s affairs, would Jawaharlal Nehru have intervened in South Africa’s apartheid policy or Indira Gandhi helped in the formation of Bangladesh? Even Congressmen from Tamil Nadu would not accept those reasons.”

The DMK leader was proved right. His former ally, Chidambaram, said that India should have voted for the resolution. “Although there was no unanimity among parties on the resolution against Sri Lanka, personally I felt India should have supported it,” he told reporters at Chennai airport.

By abstaining from the vote, the Congress has only ensured its continued political isolation in the state, analysts feel. After the UPA’s indirect help to Colombo, Karunanidhi would now find it difficult to sell a pro-Congress line even to his ardent supporters.