Karunanidhi-led DMK trying to woo former allies, form mega alliance

M Karunanidhi-led DMK, which was decimated in the last assembly polls, is trying to make maximum advantage of former Tamil Nadu chief minister and AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa's conviction in the disproportionate assets case by wooing its former allies ahead of the 2016 polls.

By Ritesh K Srivastava | Updated: Oct 30, 2014, 13:12 PM IST
Karunanidhi-led DMK trying to woo former allies, form mega alliance

Chennai: M Karunanidhi-led DMK, which was decimated in the last assembly polls, is trying to take maximum advantage of former Tamil Nadu chief minister and AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa's conviction in the disproportionate assets case by wooing its former allies ahead of the 2016 polls.

Reports on Thursday claimed that Jayalalithaa's conviction in a corruption case, which also debars her from contesting the state elections in 2016, has provided a golden opportunity to the DMK for political re-alignment in Tamil Nadu.

Karunanidhi-led DMK is trying to stitch a mega alliance by wooing back former allies - the PMK and the MDMK – which are currently part of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance at the Centre, sources claim.

The wedding reception of PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss in Chennai on Tuesday evening provided a perfect opportunity for the DMK to initiate talks of a mega alliance with the like-minded parties. Karunanidhi's heir apparent MK Stalin was seen greeting MDMK chief Vaiko, who was once seen as his political rival in the DMK.

Ailing DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi also told reporters later, "Vaiko is not my enemy, he's my friend. I'd be happy if a new alliance emerges."

Speaking to reporters, Vaiko described his meeting with Stalin as a good political culture. “We both met and enquired about each other's families and Karunanidhi," he was qouted as saying.

However, the insiders say that DMK's ambitious plan for 2016 also includes bridging the gap with actor Vijayakanth's DMDK and mending fences with the Congress.

But getting together such an alliance against the AIADMK will not be easy. The PMK and DMDK have said they want to position themselves as an alternative to both the AIADMK and the DMK, which have taken turns at ruling the state for years.

However, the Jayalalithaa-led AIADMK is unruffled by the political activity here. "Things will change course if our Amma Jayalalithaa gets relief in the Karnataka High Court. Anyway, the conviction would only give the party the advantage of sympathy," a senior AIADMK leader was quoted as saying.

Jayalalithaa won a big mandate to rule Tamil Nadu in 2012 and was chief minister till last month, when she had to step down after being convicted by a Bangalore court. She cannot contest the next elections unless her conviction is revoked; she has challenged it in the Karnataka High Court.

 By-elections for her seat, Srirangam, will test how well the DMK can mobilise other parties into a united opposition against the AIADMK.

In the national elections this year, the AIADMK flattened all other parties, winning 36 of the 39 Lok Sabha seats. The DMK won none and the PMK could win only one.