Chennai,Oct 15: The war of words between Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and DMK president M Karunanidhi over the DMK headquarters land issue escalated today with the former insisting her mentor and AIADMK founder late M G Ramachandran did not sign documents on the DMK's purchase.
“Karunanidhi had stated that MGR's name was present in the DMK Trust. I am not saying his name was not there but his signature is not in the documents regarding purchase of land for Anna Arivalayam,” she said while camapigning for the two phased civic polls on October 17 and 19.
Alleing that Anna Arivalayam, the DMK headquarters, had become Karunanidhi's “family property,” Jayalalithaa said her bete noire was trying to “hide the truth,” on the land deal. Karunanidhi had hit out at Jayalalithaa for her “land grabbing” remark, reminding her that MGR was the DMK treasurer when the land was acquired.
Jayalalithaa, who has been alleging that Anna Arivalayam was constructed on grabbed land, had said that although MGR was the then DMK treasurer, he had questioned the “strong-arm methods” of Karunanidhi in purchase of the land from a zamindar family and insisted that he had been expelled from DMK for opposing such irregularities.
However, Karunanidhi had insisted no wrong was done and said the 25 grounds (one ground equals 2,400 sq ft) where Anna Arivalayam stands now was bought for Rs nine lakh in 1972 by the DMK trust, of which he was the president and (late party leader) Nedunchezhian and MGR its members. While Jayalalithaa had claimed the property was built on 90 grounds and challenged Karunanidhi to part with the rest, he had warned her against any attempt to ‘usurp' it, saying “the day she tries to do that will be the last day of her government.”