‘Reclaiming state rights’: DMK Youth Wing’s conference garners support of Oppn leaders

DMK Youth Wing Secretary Udhayanidhi Stalin stated that the conference aims to bring together young minds across the state to discuss and deliberate the importance of state rights in the context of the attack on India's federal structure.
Udhayanidhi Stalin at DMK Youth Wing's second state conference
Udhayanidhi Stalin at DMK Youth Wing's second state conference
Written by:

The second state conference of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK)’s youth wing, which began on Sunday, January 21, in Tamil Nadu’s Salem district has been garnering support from various opposition leaders for its theme – “Reclaiming state rights.”

Congress Parliamentary Committee Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, in a statement, said that the initiative will strengthen the country’s federal structure reflected in Article 1 of the Constitution, which states categorically that “India, that is Bharat, shall be a Union of States.” She further said  that It was essential that the conference delves into the challenges in the country’s democracy.

The statement added, “It is disturbing that in the last decade or so, we have witnessed an intensifying trend of encroachment upon the Constitutional rights of states, including Tamil Nadu, by the BJP-led government. It has spared no effort to harass and intimidate non-BJP governments by misusing Constitutional authorities, deploying investigative agencies as a tool of political vendetta and vengeance, making states' entitlements appear as a special favour being bestowed on them by a generous Prime Minister and denying and delaying emergency relief funds when natural disasters strike. Together, by raising our voices, advocating for change and building alliances, we must unite and reclaim the rights of the states as enshrined in our Constitution so that each state can govern effectively and address the unique needs and aspirations of their respective peoples.”

Extending his congratulations to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin and Minister for Sports and Youth Welfare Udhayanidhi Stalin, All India Congress Committee President Mallikarajun Kharge said that “Reclaiming State Rights" was topical more than ever due to the prevailing situation in the country.

“Federalism is one of the core attributes of India's democratic polity. In terms of Article 1 of the Constitution of India, India, i.e., Bharat is a union of states, the states are bestowed upon autonomy as per the scheme of provisions given in the Constitution. Therefore, it becomes imperative that the States of the Indian Union do get the rights/autonomy as envisaged in the Constitution. The Youth Wing of a dynamic political party such as Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) deliberating in-depth on the reclaiming of the rights of the States augurs well for the principles of federalism in the country,” the letter added.

In response to Kharge’s wishes, DMK Youth Wing Secretary Udhayanidhi Stalin said that DMK has always upheld the values of social justice, equity and federalism. He stated that the conference aims to bring together young minds across the state to discuss and deliberate the importance of state rights in the context of the attack on India's federal structure. “We believe that your party's support to this conference will greatly enrich the discussion and contribute to the success of the event. We request you to share your thoughts on the importance of State autonomy and your wishes for the conference, in a letter and a video message. We would be delighted to telecast your message at the conference. We are confident that your message will inspire our young attendees and encourage a deeper discussion on the importance of state rights,” he added. 

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said that the DMK youth wing was taking up an important political responsibility through its conference so as to empower the states and the Union. He criticised the Union government for “repeatedly implementing laws on subjects that fall under the State List in the Constitution, thereby reducing the powers of the states.” The Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader also brought up the issue of “political misuse of Governors.” 

“They (Union government) are also entering into international agreements that affect the States without States' consent. States aren't even being informed about such agreements, prior to entering into them. As Chancellors, Governors are acting at the behest of their political masters in matters related to higher education, especially in State Universities, overlooking the interests of the States and their people,” the letter read. Pinarayi Vijayan also alleged that the share of the states in common resources of the country was being reduced and the states' powers of taxation have been curtailed.

Various resolutions were passed during the DMK’s second youth wing conference on Sunday, which includes the abolition of the post of Governor. The resolution stated that the Governor’s post “remains as an extra flesh” and its removal was the way forward to protect democracy. In another resolution that was passed, the youth wing condemned the BJP government for using the Enforcement Directorate as a tool to suppress the opposition.  Another resolution was passed to shift education and medicine from the Concurrent list to the State list, which would be taken up legally as well by the DMK. One of the resolutions that was passed stressed on the restoration of statehood for Jammu and Kashmir.  

Related Stories

No stories found.
The News Minute