DC Edit | DMK’s Stalin walks tall

M.K. Stalin stands as a stalwart defender of Tamil Nadu's values, leading the DMK to a resounding victory despite BJP's efforts to sway the state

The centre of power in Chennai and Tamil Nadu has always been Fort St George. And in modern days, the state itself has become an ideological fortress that projects and protects certain values like social justice and women empowerment.

Standing tall in the bastion of social values is M.K. Stalin who promised a 40-0 (39 + one Pondy seat) verdict from the people for the INDIA bloc and delivered it in style despite the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s most strenuous efforts to woo the state in multiple visits, including for a spiritual stint at meditation before the Lok Sabha poll results were declared.

The national BJP was able to even breach Kerala, a perennial battlefield between the Congress-led UDF and the communists’ LDF, where the popular actor Suresh Gopi won a seat, besides dominating Karnataka, steamrolling Andhra in alliance with Mr Chandrababu Naidu and Mr Pawan Kalyan and sharing the spoils in Telangana where only months ago Congress came to power.

If Tamil Nadu was the symbolic gateway to the south, its doors were firmly shut by the DMK to forces considered external to the Dravidian heartland, including in 2019 when the AIADMK, in a poll pact with the BJP then, won one seat to stop a clean sweep for DMK.

The biggest factor in the stunning performance of the contribution of 40 seats to the INDIA bloc was the DMK’s ability to substantially transfer the votes of its cadre base to alliance partners in the Congress (9 +1 Pondy), CPM(I) (2), CPI (2), VCK (2), MDMK (1) and IUML (1).

Had INDIA been able to wrest power, Mr Stalin would still have been content to stay at home as one of the most powerful regional chieftains though his wish list in ministries may have been long, including the finance ministry berth for one of his colleagues. A steadfast ally of the Congress since his father M. Karunanidhi switched out of the A.B. Vajpayee BJP+ alliance to UPA in 2004, Stalin has been the staunchest ally projecting Congress as the head of the Opposition.
( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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