All but Captain ready to board saffron ship

Published Jan 31, 2014, 3:29 pm IST
Updated Jan 20, 2016, 3:24 pm IST
The BJP camp in TN is all set for the Lok Sabha polls, except th­at ‘Captain’ Vijay­ak­a­nth.

Chennai: The BJP camp in Tamil Nadu is all set for the Lok Sabha polls, except th­at ‘Captain’ Vijay­ak­a­nth has not yet waved the green flag.

Insiders, however, ins­i­st that the DMDK chief h­as agreed to join and on­­ly the numbers are to be finalised. “Captain has mentioned 14 seats (out of total 40 in TN and Puducherry). There have been some informal contacts between the DMDK and the BJP. Things will take final shape after the Ulundurpet conference (of DMDK) on February 2,” said a source close to Vijayakanth.


“The DMK leadership has at last realised the fu­t­ility of waiting for Cap­tain. They (DMK) have now instructed their district secretaries to go full steam preparing the ca­dres for the May battle,” said the source, requesting anonymity.

He noted that the serious convuls­ions now ro­cking the DM­K and also the “very negative im­age” stuck to the Con­gress heading UPA-2 government “has now made the coming Parliament polls really a battle bet­ween the AIA­DMK alli­ance and the DMDK-led camp.”

There are, however, a few hiccups in the saffr­on efforts to sew up a str­ong alliance in the Dra­vi­dian political turf.  DM­DK functionaries in­sist on repeating their Ca­ptain’s pre-condition for poll alliance  — his pa­rty must be accepted as the leader of the team-which is why they refer to it as the ‘DMDK-led ca­mp’, while the BJP emissaries have been pleading with Captain’s lieute­nants that the May election is for electing the PM and Narendra Modi is the candidate for the front.

Another problem for the camp-in-the-making is the PMK pressuring the BJP not to treat it too ‘shabbily’ in relation to the seats given to the DMDK. BJP leaders held another round of talks with a senior PMK representative at Chennai on Wednesday where, ac­cording to informed so­urces, it was decided to “go ahead with the alliance plan but to wait for Vijayakanth’s speech at Udumalpet”.

It may be recalled that the PMK has so far ann­o­unced candidates for ten seats and is said to be re­adying another list of six names, though it must be admitted that the party could be willing to drop a few of them so as seal the saffron alliance. 

Location: Tamil Nadu