Centre withdraws CRPF security cover for Stalin, OPS; DMK chief says utilise security for protecting students

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"I urge the Govt to utilize CRPF personnel to protect universities and students from those perpetrating violence in the name of religion," Stalin said.

In an unprecedented move, the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) withdrew its security detail for Tamil Nadu Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam and DMK leader M K Stalin Thursday. OPS had been under the Y+ security cover since 2017 after the CRPF had deployed personnel to protect the Deputy CM from threats. On the other hand, opposition leader Stalin had been under Z+ level security.

Officials quoted by news agency PTI said that the Central security will be formally withdrawn after the state police take over the security task. “The security cover of these two politicians has been taken off from the central security list after a threat assessment review made by central security agencies and approved by the Union home ministry,” the official added.

Stalin took to Twitter on Friday to express his gratitude for the CRPF personnel for providing security for all these years and took a dig at the Central government for the violence happening at the Jawaharlal Nehru University campus. "I wholeheartedly thank each and every one of the @crpfindia personnel for providing security cover for me over the past many years. I urge the Govt to utilize CRPF personnel to protect universities and students from those perpetrating violence in the name of religion,” he tweeted.

Earlier on January 5, the DMK leader condemned the rising incidents of violence inside university campuses. He said all those responsible for the incident must be booked.

Though Stalin doesn't seem to be upset with the Centre's move, his party cadres and alliance partners have condemned the removal of VIP security cover. DMK MP Kanimozhi condemned the Central government's decision to withdraw the Z+security for Stalin and said he has been the voice of Tamils. She said that crores of cadres and their love will serve as a shield for the DMK leader.

https://twitter.com/mkstalin/status/1213853091834912768

In a statement released on Friday, MDMK leader Vaiko said high-level security is imperative for TN's opposition leader. “Stalin is the only leader who had been fighting against all the false allegations that have been spread against Periyar-Kalaignar’s ideology and against Dravidian principles. Violent activities like breaking the statues of Periyar are happening in the state. Under these circumstances, high-level security is imperative for TN’s opposition leader,” he said.

Speaking to the reporters, Congress MP Su.Thirunavakkarasar said, “I condemn the central government for removing the highest security offered to TN assembly’s opposition leader and DMK chief MK Stalin. They should immediately provide him the same security that was offered before.”

DMK treasurer Duraimurugan said Stalin has been deprived off the VIP security because he had been constantly at loggerheads with the BJP. “As our party leader continues to raise his voice against BJP’s decisions, he has been deprived off the VIP cover. Our leader won’t fear because of these actions,” he said.

On the other hand, Tamil Nadu Deputy Chief Minister O.Pannerselvam said the high-level has been withdrawn by the central government as they thought it’s not necessary. "There is no motive behind this, the home ministry under the central government thought it’s not necessary to provide VIP security," he said.