February 25, 2017 4:53:04 am
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) working president M K Stalin met Congress chief Sonia Gandhi on Friday to discuss the political situation that has arisen in Tamil Nadu following the transition of power. Stalin, known to be low-profile leader, has been on a fast-forward mode since the death of AIADMK chief and former CM J Jayalalithaa, which left behind a power vacuum. Stalin, it is learnt, was in Delhi to indicate that the recent political developments in Tamil Nadu will help DMK.
Stalin’s camp is trying to argue that Tamil Nadu faces instability because the new government does not have popular support. DMK leaders think discontent is brewing in the state and want to use it to the party’s advantage during the upcoming Budget Session of the Assembly and the local polls scheduled for April.
The Stalin camp has even claimed that when AIADMK MLAs were “locked up” at a resort by Sasikala’s team, 30 of them were ready to rebel against the party and had sought DMK’s support. However, sources in DMK claimed that the party doesn’t want to use any “backdoor” channel to overthrow the AIADMK government.
Sources in Stalin’s camp claims that he has taken complete control over the party as his father and DMK supremo K Karunanidhi “needs rest due to his age”.
DMK, the sources said, believes that BJP has ambitious plans in Tamil Nadu and tax raids at the Chief Secretary’s home and other places suggest that “BJP is actively watching the situation.”
The sources claimed that DMK is not thinking of distancing itself from Congress. However, they added, “talk of our ties will be only at the time of elections which is far away.” DMK, it is learnt, is suspicious of state Congress chief S Thirunavukarasar, who belongs to the Thevar community and is known to Sasikala, from the same community.
However, DMK is unlikely to move close to BJP, which it considers a potential challenger. “No chance of alliance with BJP,” said a leader from Stalin’s camp.
During his Delhi visit, Stalin also met President Pranab Mukherjee and requested him to annul the vote of confidence. The DMK leader has been demanding a fresh floor test through secret ballot.
With an eye on the instability within AIADMK, which is struggling due to infighting and caste divisions in the ranks, Stalin has introduced many changes in DMK and has asked party to meet “challenges of changing times”. One such move is his decision to stop the practice of cadres touching the feet of senior leaders. He has also put an end to the popular practice of erecting huge hoardings and his cut-outs.
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