DMK chief M. Karunanidhi Monday met his daughter and Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi, former telecom minister A. Raja and the family-run Kalaingar TV’s managing director Sharad Kumar at the high-security Tihar Jail where the trio are lodged in connection with the 2G spectrum scam.
The DMK chief, who was in the national capital on a “personal visit”, reached the jail premises at 5.43 p.m. and left in an hour at around 6.45 p.m.
Director General (Prisons) Neeraj Kumar later told reporters that Karunanidhi entered the jail through the administrative block as he enjoys Z-plus security. He also said that a special request had been made that as the DMK leader was old and wheel-chair bound a place should be arranged where he could easily visit the three accused.
All the three accused have been lodged in three different jails within the Tihar complex.
“He was allotted a deputy superintendent’s room in jail number 6. It was selected because it was on the ground floor,” Kumar said.
Karunanidhi first met his daughter and then Raja and Sharad Kumar. “While the family met Kanimozhi, the DMK leader met the two others alone,” he added.
Karunanidhi was escorted by DMK parliamentary party chief T.R. Baalu and Kanimozhi’s husband G.Aravinthan. Rajathi Ammal – Kanimozhi’s mother and Karunanidhi’s third wife – was also accompanied the leader to the prison.
The DMK chief, who came in black Mercedes, was accompanied by seven security cars. DMK leader Durai Murugan and K. Ponmudi were also present.
DMK MP K.P. Ramalingam said: “It is purely a family visit and not a political one. That is why he never met any top UPA (United Progressive Alliance) leaders,” he told reporters later.
“We will extend our moral support to her (Kanimozhi). We will camp in Delhi — go to the court and come to the jail,” Ramalingam added.
From the jail, Karunanidhi directly left for the domestic section of the Indira Gandhi International Airport. “He has to catch a 8 p.m. flight for Chennai,” the DMK leader said.
“Tomorrow (Tuesday) M.K. Stalin (Karunanidhi’s son and Kanimozhi’s half brother) will come to meet her (in the jail),” Ramalingam added.
Kanimozhi, who was sent to jail by a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) special court Friday after her bail petition was denied, filed an appeal in the Delhi High Court Monday. It will come up for hearing Tuesday.
“The arrest (of Kanimozhi) is a vendetta against DMK and my family,” Karunanidhi had said in an open letter to party cadres in the DMK official journal Friday.
In an apparent expression of the DMK’s disappointment over the arrest of Kanimozhi, none of the six ministers of the party attended the second anniversary function of the UPA-II government here Sunday. The DMK was represented only by former minister T.R. Baalu.