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Speed up rehabilitation of Sri Lankan Tamils: Karunanidhi


Chennai : The rehabilitation of Tamils displaced by fighting in Sri Lanka should be speeded up, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi said Monday.

Speaking to reporters, he said: “The rehabilitation process has started and it should be speeded up. We will inform the central government if we have any doubts on the rehabilitation process.”

He said the state government had despatched four consignments of relief material to Sri Lanka, apart from what the Indian government sends on its own.

The value of the last consignment sent by Tamil Nadu was Rs.15 crore, he said.

Nearly 300,000 Tamils displaced by fighting between the military and the Tamil Tigers are still living in camps in Sri Lanka’s north.

Asked if the unveiling of Tamil poet Thiruvalluvar’s statue in Bangalore and Kannada poet Sarvjna’s statue in Chennai would foster better relations between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, Karunanidhi said: “The progress is made towards that hope.”

He said that AIADMK leader J. Jayalalitha would be invited when Sarvjna’s statue is unveiled.

According to the chief minister, he talked to his Karnataka counterpart B.S. Yeddyurappa on the Hogenakkal water project and “a good decision will be taken”.

On swine flu, he said a high-level meeting of health officials would be held Tuesday to chalk out a strategy to contain the virus. It would also discuss the setting up of a monitoring committee and the availability of test kits.