The October 21 bypoll campaign has brought out the alter ego of the political leaders in Tamil Nadu. The discourse of leaders on the poll campaign has scaled new heights.
“Though she was a dictator who had indulged in corruption, she did not relinquish the rights of the state to the Union government,” Stalin remarked, slamming Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami for not effectively fighting for the rights of the state. As if that were not enough, Stalin had also promised a thorough probe into Jayalalithaa’s death, something even the AIADMK does not discuss as much as it did in the past during the turbulent early months of 2017.
Curiously, Stalin was not the only leader to spring a surprise this election season. His ally Congress state president KS Alagiri humbled the rest on the campaign trail. Alagiri has made it a habit to defend DMK consistently. Though it was natural for alliance party leaders to rush to each other’s defense, the regularity with which the TNCC chief has been defending the DMK has raised many eyebrows even in the state Congress circles.
Leaders of the national party who admitted to their state party president defending DMK to extraordinary levels said that Alagiri was doing it to keep the DMK in good humour. From Tamirabarani-Karumeniyaru-Nambiyar interlinking to constructing memorial for Kamarajar, every charge levelled against the DMK by ruling AIADMK has been responded to from the Congress camp, precisely by Alagiri.
Even on Wednesday, the TNCC chief had listed out a slew of welfare schemes implemented in the DMK regime in bypoll-bound Nanguneri. A Congress functionary unwilling to be named conceded that there was no harm in the TNCC chief defending the DMK, but it was unfortunate that the show of solidarity and support was not mutual.