Rajnath slams Stalin’s ‘duplicity’ over Senthilbalaji arrest

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday lashed out at DMK president and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin for his “duplicity of character” over the Enforcement Directorate (ED) arrest of his cabinet colleague V Senthil Balaji and dubbed as unconstitutional, the recent arrest of a state BJP functionary by the police.Amid some strains in ties between his BJP and ally AIADMK in Tamil Nadu, Singh said the saffron party values its partners and that the NDA led by it “is not a compulsion but a commitment.” Addressing a public meeting at suburban Tambaram to commemorate the nine years of the NDA government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he trained his guns against his “friend” Stalin over the arrest of Balaji, picked up by the ED in a cash-for-jobs scam, saying the CM questioned the action of the central agency.”Senthil Balaji has been arrested in a corruption case and Stalin had earlier called him corrupt (when Balaji was not in DMK) and demanded his arrest. Now when his demand is met, he calls it vendetta. This duplicity of character is unacceptable,” Singh said. Referring to the arrest of BJP state secretary S G Suryah last week, reportedly over a tweet, he said it was unconstitutional.Pointing out at the CM’s namesake and Russian dictator Joseph Stalin, Singh wondered if the DMK chief “took the name too seriously and is putting the spirit of democracy in danger”.”I want to appeal to all political parties in Tamil Nadu, democracy should thrive,” he said.The Union minister listed out the various initiatives delivered by the Modi-led dispensation for the welfare of Tamils in the state as well as in neighbouring Sri Lanka, even as he asserted that the installation of the ‘Sengol’ (sceptre) in the new Parliament building by the PM recently reflected Tamil Nadu’s contribution.