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State focusing on leadership, not work, says P Muralidhar Rao

BJP general secretary P Murlidhar Rao tells Indian Express that his party’s politics in Tamil Nadu was never linked to the developments in AIADMK.

Written by Liz Mathew | New Delhi |
February 7, 2017 5:12:24 am
BJP, AIADMK, Tamil Nadu, P Murlidhar Rao, Tamil Nadu politics, BJP in Tamil Nadu, India news, Indian Express Muralidhar Rao

With BJP facing allegations of attempts to destabilise AIADMK, party general secretary P Muralidhar Rao tells Liz Mathew that his party’s politics in Tamil Nadu was never linked to the developments in AIADMK. Excerpts:

Did developments in Tamil Nadu politics came as a surprise to the BJP?

Not exactly. There were rumours in this direction. I don’t agree it took us by surprise. The BJP has no role in internal matters of AIADMK, because we are neither partners at the Centre nor in the state. We have no direct influence in decisions taken in the party, nor do we want to interfere…. We have taken some positions (over the years): we had opposed Jayalalithaa in some issues while she was the Chief Minister. In her absence, the situation has not altered.

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What is BJP’s stand on Sasikala’s election as AIADMK legislative party leader?

Sasikala becoming the CM is purely an internal matter (of AIADMK). The present CM, O Panneerselvam, has proposed her name and the MLAs unanimously agreed. We have no direct say on it.

Our concern is, why should there be these frequent changes, creating confusion in AIADMK and in Tamil Nadu? Instead of focusing on development, the state is now focusing on leadership. This decision should have been taken earlier.

The Governor’s visit to Delhi and his meeting with the Home Minister have also intensified rumours that the BJP did not appreciate Sasikala’s election.

Our political line is the same in Tamil Nadu — whether it’s Panneerselvam, Jayalalithaa or Sasikala.

Sasikala’s husband M Natarajan has accused the BJP of trying to split AIADMK.

I have not verified this statement (and) I have not met him. I don’t have to comment because I do not know the view of Sasikala and the AIADMK. As long as AIADMK and Sasikala have not expressed their view on the Narendra Modi government, or the BJP, I cannot make a statement on that…. Natarajan does not hold any position in AIADMK.

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