Not everyone in the DMK appears to be on the same page on alliance related issues ahead of the upcoming Assembly polls in 2021. A couple of highly placed leaders were learnt to have expressed reservation to the current alliance composition.
Leaders, both of whom hail from northern districts, were understood to have attempted to persuade party president M K Stalin to ditch Thol Tirumavalavan’s VCK from the alliance for the ensuing Assembly polls. While a leader at the DMK helm was said to have pressed for accommodating PMK after expelling VCK owing to alleged community loyalty and electoral advantage in his native district, the other leader, a district secretary close to Stalin from the northern district, party sources revealed, might have been influenced by rivalry with local VCK leader in his district.
The two leaders, however, have so far not succeeded in their persuasion as Stalin has been determined to continue with the existing alliance at least till the 2021 polls. Reports about disinterest among influential DMK leaders came to light in the backdrop of party general secretary Duraimurugan stating that parties might-join or leave the alliance ahead of the election.
“Though Stalin had issued a clarification statement a few days ago to silence all kinds of criticism about disharmony in the secular progressive alliance, a few leaders continue to fuel speculation,” said a DMK senior, who did not wish to be named. “Stalin is in no mood to ditch VCK or have any association with BJP or its allies. He is certain that Thiruma should be a part of the alliance. Sentiments and disaffection of a few leaders can at best be treated as election time rumours,” the leader added.
When asked, DMK organizing secretary RS Bharthi, he said; “As far as our secular progressive alliance is concerned, our party chief is the leader. He is determined that the alliance should continue. And it is strong. All our allies, including VCK, have accepted our party chief as the Chief Ministerial candidate. Our general secretary had made a statement, which was clarified later. Our party president had also a statement a few days ago and cleared all doubts.”
Claiming that the question of a change in alliance composition does not even arise, Bharathi added, “In such a massive alliance, one or two persons might have a different opinion. We will discuss and settle it at the right time, if necessary.”