EVKS Elangovan may stay till polls
Deccan Chronicle| k. karthikeyan
Rumours that Thangkabalu named TNCC chief made rounds
Led by E.V.K.S. Elangovan, TN Congress party cadres protest in the city on Monday demanding a ban on sale of liquor. They also condemned the arrest of Kovan. (Photo: DC)
Chennai: State Congress president E.V.K.S. Elangovan may have won round one of the bout with the Chidambarams who on Monday met party chief Sonia Gandhi and persuaded her to sack the former.
Even state party leaders with influential AICC connections had eyebrows raised after Elangovan left the city for New Dehli early evening, possibly, to attend the scheduled meeting with President Pranab Mukherjee along with other PCC chiefs, legislature party leaders and MPs to up the ante on the ruling BJP on the intolerance front.
Former TNCC chief K.V. Thangkabalu, who had no qualms in making public the request they had made to the party chief at the national capital, may have been the sole member of the delegation to benefit from Monday’s political storm that shook Satyamurthy Bhavan, thanks to spin doctors who tipped him to be the likely successor of Elangovan for a brief moment in the evening.
However, sources privy to the development, ruled out changed of guard at the TNCC helm immediately and said, "Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi returns from Patna only on Tuesday. Even otherwise no decision will be made till the Bihar polls get over next Monday."
Furthermore, time is another factor that works to Elangovan’s advantage, for the state Assembly elections are around the corner in Tamil Nadu and replacement of the PCC chief and reorganisation of the party structure is the last thing the party would want ahead of the polls.
Sonia has been refusing to grant Thangkabalu audience for over a fortnight, with the acerbic incumbent TNCC chief holding the flock together even after former union minister G. K. Vasan engineered a vertical split in the state party unit and revived TMC.
Chidambaram abstained from the off the cuff media briefing the delegation organised after its rendezvous with Sonia. Incidentally, AICC secretary Su Thirunavukkarasar, who had apprised Sonia a week back about the state of affairs of TN CC, earlier in the day put his weight behind Elangovan at the party’s pro-prohibition rally this morning and said that Elangovan would continue as PCC chief till 2016 Assembly elections.
Reliable Congress insiders lent credence to Thirunavukkarasar’s forecast by stating that replacement of Elangovan was unlikely, although conversely they were willing to admit that they would not be surprised if the high command constituted a poll committee, most probably, chaired by Chidambaram senior, which will defang Elangovan and increase his rebels stakes during the during the ensuing Assembly polls.