Chennai: In an Official event in Chennai on Saturday (November 21), Union Home Minister Amit Shah is to declare open Thervoy Kandigai reservoir (Chennai’s fifth reservoir) and also lay the foundation stone for several infrastructure projects across Tamil Nadu worth Rs 67,378 cr. The Home Minister and former BJP President’s visit also comes at a time when political parties in the southern state are gearing up for the impending 2021 Assembly polls.
Phase-II of Chennai Metro Rail at an estimated cost of Rs 61,843 cr, a flyover at Coimbatore-Avinashi Road at the cost of Rs 1,620 cr, a shutter dam across Cauvery river in Karur district, expansion of Chennai trade centre at the cost of Rs 309 cr, construction of a petroleum terminal at Vallur by Indian Oil Corporation at the cost of Rs 900 cr, construction of a lube plant at Ammulavoyal at the cost of Rs 1,400 cr and a jetty at the Chennai Kamarajar port at a cost of Rs 900 cr, are the projects for which the foundation stone will be laid.
The official function is to take place at Kalaivanar Arangam in Chennai on Saturday evening, with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam presiding over, in the presence of State Ministers, Members of Parliament from Tamil Nadu and other dignitaries.
It was on November 15 that Tamil Nadu BJP President L Murugan had made an announcement regarding Amit Shah’s Chennai visit and meeting with Chief Minister Palaniswami. Speaking to reporters, Murugan had said Shah’s visit will enthuse the party workers here and will create a fear in the minds of the opposition parties.
The State BJP is expected to accord a rousing reception to the Home Minister at the airport, and later there will also be a meeting of their party officials. Shah’s visit also comes at a time when allies AIADMK and BJP are on a collision course over the latter’s Vetri Vel Yatra in Tamil Nadu.
The BJP sees the Vel Yatra as a show of solidarity with the Hindu community in the state, ahead of the 2021 Assembly elections.
It must be noted that, in recent times there had been controversies in the state after a Youtube channel had uploaded a video with derogatory content against hymns sung in praise of Lord Muruga. BJP functionaries and supporters had alleged that the persons who uploaded those videos on YouTube had ties with the opposition party DMK.
The Tamil Nadu Government had decided to reject permission for the month-long Vetri Vel Yatra that the state unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party had planned across the state, invoking Lord Murugan. The Yatra, began on November 6 and is to conclude on December 6, covering all six abodes of Lord Murugan by traversing from Tiruttani to Tiruchendur.
On the first day of the Yatra, L Murugan and BJP Vice President Annamalai, H Raja, CT Ravi and over 100 party functionaries were taken into preventive custody and later released by Police in Tiruttani, when they attempted to go forward with the ‘Vel Yatra’. They proceeded despite not being granted permission by the Tamil Nadu Government.