Chennai, Aug 11 (PTI) Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa today denied that investors or businesses were moving away from the state to neighbouring Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh and instead claimed that Tamil Nadu was a favoured investment destination.
Jayalalithaa said that though Chief Ministers of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, N Chandrababu Naidu and Siddaramaiah had met investors in the state and wooed them with sops like free land or others, nobody has left Tamil Nadu.
“If a business has to be profitable in a state, the first requirement is proper maintenance of law and order, which is in the best shape in Tamil Nadu only. Secondly, as far as power is concerned, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka are in a situation of buying power from us,” she said.
Intervening, DMK’s T R B Raja during the debate on grants for Industries and Rural Industries departments, the Chief Minister assured that none of the investors would leave the state at any point and “I can say it with conviction and determination.”
For a brief while, Raja and Jayalalithaa debated in English, after the former made some points in the language.
English is hardly used as a language of communication in the state Assembly.
Later, when the debate turned towards Chennai Metro Rail, Jayalalithaa questioned why the DMK government of 2006-11 had allowed manufacturing of coaches to be done from Andhra Pradesh, although the train service was meant for Chennai.
To this, Raja did not come up with a convincing reply but asked why Jayalalithaa was concerned about the issue even as she was opposed to the very Metro Rail project.
To this, the Chief Minister said that instead of replying to her pointed query, Raja was making “irrelevant” remarks and said “this shows his lack of maturity.”
DMK members opposed the remark.
Jayalalithaa lambasted the DMK on the Chennai Metro rail issue, saying that party-led government had “betrayed” the people of Tamil Nadu by accepting to certain proposals.
For instance, though the project was a Centre-state joint initiative, the then DMK government had accepted provisions like taking the onus of repayment of Japanese debt on the state government though Centre would get its share of profits.
Jayalalithaa said she had recently written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, calling for reconsideration of such provisions and change them in the interest of the state.
“Why did you betray Tamil Nadu? Why did you (the DMK government) sign such a pact,” she asked.