DMK reaches out to old ally Congress for assembly polls

RSTV Bureau
FILE: File Photo of DMK chief and Tamil Nadu's former Chief Minister M Karunanidhi. Photo - PTI

FILE: File Photo of DMK chief and Tamil Nadu’s former Chief Minister M Karunanidhi.
Photo – PTI

In a politically significant development concerning Tamil Nadu state politics, Opposition DMK has reached out to the Congress party seeking pre-poll alliance for the assembly elections due next year. The principal opposition party in the state’s bi-polar polity had snapped ties with the national party three years ago, while they were still in power at the Centre.

DMK was Congess-led UPA’s second largest component after the Trinamool Congress. Plagued with corruption cases against their leaders, A. Raja and Kanimozhi, and the emotive issue of Sri Lankan Tamils, DMK had walked out of the UPA-2 in early 2013.

“We will not exclude Congress while inviting alliance parties (to join the DMK-led alliance),” DMK patriarch M. Karunanidhi told the press in Chennai on asked if his party would invite Congress party.

The Dravidian party had allied with the Congress in a pre-poll arrangement before 2004 Lok Sabha polls leading to the alliance sweeping all the 39 seats in the states. The DMK-Congress led alliance further strengthened after coming to power in 2006 assembly polls in Tamil Nadu. But the alliance suffered in 2011 assembly polls as the incumbent J Jayalithaa-led AIADMK stormed back in power.

jaya2An indication to this effect had come as early as in July this year when DMK Treasurer MK Stalin and Congress state unit chief EVKS Elangovan had said that the two parties would “work together” to protect the interests of the people of Tamil Nadu, in particular the oppressed sections.

DMK had in early 2013 snapped ties with Congress over the Sri Lankan-Tamils issue. The rupture had also come against the backdrop of the arrests of former Union Telecom Minister A Raja and Karunanidhi’s daughter Kanimozhi, Rajya Sabha MP, in the alleged spectrum allocation scam.

Besides the Congress party, Karunanidhi had days ago sent feelers to another strong local player DMDK chief Vijayakanth to join his party-led front.

The former Chief Minister also asserted that his party’s manifesto is being prepared to protect the interests of all the sections of society.

(With inputs from the PTI)