Chennai: In a stern message to warring leaders, DMK chief M Karunanidhi on Thursday said his party drew strength from its grassroot level workers and not on the support of those in power or former ministers.
"If this movement is glowing today, it is not because of those who are leaders of the party, or those who had held high posts or had been Ministers," he said at a marriage function here.
Stung by the turf war between senior leaders TR Baalu and Union Minister of State for Finance SS Palanimanickam, the 88-year old DMK patriarch has recently said such intra-party feud made him sleepless.
Reports of sibling rivalry between Karunanidhi`s sons M K Alagiri and Stalin had always been doing the rounds but the outbursts of Palanimanickam against Baalu prompted the DMK chief to rebuke the minister.
The minister, who represents Thanjavur, had said on Saturday that Baalu was trying to take credit for projects in his constituency.
"Whatever the name earned by this movement, it is because of the workers," Karunanidhi said.
He said the party had endured many a storm not just because it was led by him, or those working under his supervision, but due to the efforts of dedicated supporters.
"Today we differentiate ourselves on the basis of the local or district unit," he said in apparent reference to the turf war between Palanimanickam and Baalu.
Karunanidhi has been battling factionalism since the routing of his party in the April 2011 assembly elections. Party functionaries had even come to blows at a function in Madurai recently, prompting him to hold a fire-fighting meeting in Chennai.