Highlights

  • Congress MP triggers controversy
  • Says need a separate nation for the south
  • Lashes out at Centre for not releasing funds

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Congress MP DK Suresh says demand for 'separate nation' will rise if 'injustice to South continues'

BJP accused the Congress of promoting divisive mentality after one of its MPs from Bengaluru sought a separate nation for the southern states  

Congress MP DK Suresh says demand for 'separate nation' will rise if 'injustice to South continues'

Congress lawmaker from Bengaluru DK Suresh stoked a row on Thursday after he demanded a separate country for the southern states citing unequal distribution of grants.

Minutes after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the interim budget, Suresh, who is the brother of Deputy Chief Minister DK Sivakumar, accused the BJP-led central government of not releasing funds to the southern states, and said that the centre's negligence is pushing them to seek a separate nation.

"This is the election budget. In the interim budget, only names have been changed. They have introduced some Sanskrit names and Hindi names of schemes. The Centre is not properly giving the right share of GST and direct taxes to South Indian states. The South Indian states are facing injustice. The money collected from southern states is being given to North Indian states," he said, according to ANI news agency.

"If this continues, we will be forced to demand a separate country. The centre is getting over Rs 4 lakh crore from us and what we are getting in return is negligible. We have to question this. If this is not rectified, all southern states have to raise their voices demanding a separate nation," he added.

He also lashed out at the centre for not giving grants to Karnataka under the 15th Finance Commission's recommendations.

The Congress distanced itself from the comments. Reacting to his brother's remarks, DK Shivakumar told ANI nws agency, "DK Suresh or any other leader have spoken of the pain of South India... There has to be a balance. The entire country is one... You cannot only look at the Hindi belt... In this budget, there is no equal distribution of finances... Karnataka has been giving a lot of revenue to the Centre."

"For the entire South India, no major announcement has been made... We feel like we have been let down. But the entire country is one. We are Indians. India should be united. There is no question of demanding anything region-wise..."

Whereas veteran Congress leader P Chidambaram said, "...It is not the policy of the Congress Party or the position of the Congress Party to ask for a separate country that I can deny. For the rest, you have to ask Mr Suresh."

The BJP, on the other hand, accused the parliamentarian of making seditious remarks.

The state is witnessing a fast-paced development and is receiving funds from the central government... When this is the factual matrix, not only is he arguing and presenting a case that is bereft of facts, but he (DK Suresh) is also making a very Muhammad Ali Jinnah style of argument and trying to whip up passion in the country. This is condemnable and is not expected of a senior member of parliament," BJP MP Tejasvi Surya told ANI.


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