Reporter’s diary: Ascension of the prince-in-waiting, yay or nay?

While it is not the first time that the topic is making the rounds – to be precise, this is the third time that the talks about Chepauk MLA are floating in the power corridors. But it seems different this time.
Chepauk-Triplicane MLA Udhayanidhi Stalin
Chepauk-Triplicane MLA Udhayanidhi StalinFile

CHENNAI: Fort St George, the nerve centre of power in Tamil Nadu, is buzzing with rumours – yet again – about the much-speculated ascension of prince-in-waiting Udhayanidhi Stalin into the State Cabinet.

While it is not the first time that the topic is making the rounds – to be precise, this is the third time that the talks about Chepauk MLA are floating in the power corridors. But it seems different this time.

The buzz is so loud, thanks in part to the frenzy on social media, that it has caught the attention of officials ranging from office assistants to even the otherwise-unflappable senior officials. Some of them whom this scribe has acquainted with over the past few years reached out to know more about the rumoured coronation.

Officials are badgering reporters frequenting the Secretariat with 3 main questions: When would Udhayanidhi become a Minister? Which department would he head? Finally, who would he choose as the department Secretary?

“We’re not sure if this is just a rumour or if it has already been decided. But every officer wants to know more about this political development. Further, the transfer of several officers is also awaited,” disclosed a government official.

It’s not just the officials, but even DMK leaders and cadre are eager to know more details. Even when asked on condition of anonymity, a senior functionary was only willing to say that it was too early to comment.

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