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NewsWhat is the special interest UNP minister has in steel house project asks TNA MP Sumanthiran

What is the special interest UNP minister has in steel house project asks TNA MP Sumanthiran

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Image: MP Sumanthiran and MP Swaminathan.

TNA MP M.A. Sumanthiran has questioned minister Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs Minister D.M. Swaminathan ” what is his special interest in steel houses project and told him to resign from his portfolio. “We only do not want others lining their pockets in the name of our people. Because of this wrong, false and malicious propaganda of yours we have on our own initiative worked with a group of civil society and produced an alternate proposal. It will cost less than half the amount of money that the Government was willing to pay if your proposal went through for 65,000 houses. The most curious thing is when an offer like that was responsibly placed by us in this House, we have been told to let Minister Swaminathan have 10,000 houses. Why should he? What is the inescapable inference here?” TNA MP has stated.

The related report published in the Daily News follows:

TNA MP M.A. Sumanthiran railing against Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs Minister D.M. Swaminathan demanded his resignation in Parliament yesterday.

The MP was making an angry speech during the Committee Stage debate of the Budget 2017 when the Finance Head of ‘Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs Ministry’ was taken up.

He said the TNA would call for a division at the end of debate to register their opposition to the Minister. MP Sumanthiran in his speech strongly objected to the 65,000 pre-fabricated steel houses project in the North and a recent statement by Swaminathan over Constitutional reforms.

Commenting on the pre-fabricated steel houses project Sumanthiran said, “Why are you so intent in doing this project? All the 16 TNA MPs recently specifically wrote to the President and Prime Minister stating our reasons why we do not want this. However, the Minister is going around the country saying the TNA is against the development. You know all that is false” he said.

“We only do not want others lining their pockets in the name of our people. Because of this wrong, false and malicious propaganda of yours we have on our own initiative worked with a group of civil society and produced an alternate proposal. It will cost less than half the amount of money that the Government was willing to pay if your proposal went through for 65,000 houses. The most curious thing is when an offer like that was responsibly placed by us in this House, we have been told to let Minister Swaminathan have 10,000 houses. Why should he? What is the inescapable inference here?” he stated.

Sumanthiran responding to a recent comment by the minister said, “Just two days ago you made a speech where you have said 13th Amendment to the Constitution is adequate solution to the Tamil national question. How dare you say that? Who are you to say that? Did the people elect you to come here and say these things?”

“You have been appointed as a member of the Steering Committee to draft a new Constitution. Why do we need a new Constitution if the 13th Amendment is the solution? Ask yourselves those basic questions before you speak. You don’t realise the kind of damage that you are doing to the community merely because you bear a Tamil name. We cannot allow you to continuously damage our people’s future like this. We have borne enough. This must stop at some point and if you cannot, I ask with all respect please resign from your portfolio. Take some other portfolio. Give this to somebody of another community who will do a better job for our people,” he added.

“I am sure there are many others capable and willing, who will do the work of resettlement and rehabilitation of the Tamil people of this country than you are doing at the moment. So, it is our request today in this House that you please relinquish the portfolio of rehabilitation and resettlement and give it over. We will be forced to call for a division today to demonstrate this to the country,” Sumanthiran noted.

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