His Cabinet colleagues, D Jayakumar, P Thangamani and C Vijaya Baskar, are among the frequent travellers to Delhi. Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam also frequents the national capital. “During the days of former CM J Jayalalithaa, each visit should be cleared by Poes Garden. So the Ministers’ jaunts to Delhi were restricted. But now, there is no such constraints, which is an added reason for the leaders to frequent Delhi,” whispered a former AIADMK MP. With the Rajya Sabha elections due next month and rumours that the AIADMK may get a berth in the Narendra Modi government making the rounds, more AIADMK netas are keeping their schedule open for Delhi tour. “‘Make hay while sunshine, float tenders for new contracts’ is the mantra going rounds among a section of the leaders,” said an official. Such visits will be more frequent during the current fiscal for political and financial reasons, he added. With just a year to go for the next assembly polls and the State facing the financial strain, State Ministers are also frequenting the national capital seeking the release of central funds and political advice from the saffron leaders.
— CS Kotteswaran, Chennai