DMK President M Karunanidhi on Wednesday described as "half-hearted," AIADMK supremo Jayalalithaa's assurance of prohibition in a phased manner if voted to power in the assembly polls, and questioned why had she not done it in the last five years as Chief Minister.
In a letter to partymen, Karunanidhi said despite repeated clarifications from his party, Jayalalithaa was continuing to question DMK on the dry law.
The DMK President, responding to Jayalalithaa's barb in an election rally recently that DMK "conspired" to sell liquor through clubs, said his party manifesto for May 16 Assembly polls had made it clear that a law will be enacted to implement prohibition and ways and means will be found to compensate the resultant revenue loss.
He said though Jayalalithaa had now proposed bringing in the dry regime in a phased manner, her cabinet colleague, Electricity and Excise Minister Natham R Viswanathan, had earlier categorically ruled out prohibition.
"Having made a half-hearted announcement (on implementing prohibition in phases), she is now asking why DMK had not proposed total prohibition," he said.
By doing so, she was trying to mislead people, he said adding the DMK had "clearly" stated its intention to implement prohibition in the state.
Referring to Jayalalithaa's remarks that she was keen to implement prohibition, Karunanidhi asked "what has she been doing for the past five years."
"The entire authority is in her hands. What little step has she taken for implementing prohibition, albeit in a staggered way," he asked.
Prohibition has taken centrestage in this election, with all parties promising to bring a dry law if voted to power.
Liquor sales, done through state-run TASMAC outlets, brings in about Rs 30,000 crore to the state exchequer, annually.
AIADMK supremo and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Wednesday flayed DMK on law and order situation during its previous rule alleging the regime was marred by interference in police functioning, land grab and other similar issues.
Addressing an election rally in Salem, the Chief Minister said the "hands of police were tied" during the DMK rule to prevent them from acting on complaints and recalled how the party leader and former Minister, late Veerapandi S Arumugam, himself faced land grab charges in the district.
"Even ministers in collusion with anti-social elements were involved in land grab. Fake documents were prepared to snatch away property even as the hands of police were tied to prevent acting against such complaints," she alleged.
DMK functionaries of different ranks and "many power centres" did not allow the police to work freely, she alleged.
After the AIADMK came to power in the 2011 elections, the police were given a free hand to act on complaints and allowed to function sans political interference, she claimed, adding, the rule of law has been established in Tamil Nadu now.
The number of crimes have also reduced, Jayalalithaa, who holds the Home portfolio, said.
She claimed around 6,000 complaints were lodged during the DMK regime on such issues but chargesheets were filed only in around 300 of them.
"Many people would have lost property. That is why my government set up special cells and courts to probe and dispose land grab and property cases," she said.
Acting on over 3,200 cases of land grab and property issues, over 5000 acres of land worth about Rs 3600 crore and 38 lakh sq ft of houses have been restored to rightful owners since the AIADMK government came to power, she claimed.
She asked the voters to close the doors on DMK by raising this issue, when its leaders and candidates come, seeking their votes.
News, views and interviews- Follow our election coverage.
Click TN Election Special
Click Kerala Election Special