CHENNAI: The Congress party in Tamil Nadu is not much impressed by the feelers ‘sent’ by AIADMK led by Leader of Opposition Edappadi K Palaniswami. As speculation of the EPS-led faction exploring options beyond the BJP were being floated in media circles and on the power corridors, the state Congress has only preferred to cold shoulder such attempts.
Interactions with Congress insiders suggested that fancifulness would be an understatement of such an alliance probability for the 2024 Lok Sabha election.
A Congress leader unwilling to be quoted reasoned that their party high command was not even remotely inclined to sever ties with the DMK, which is the most reliable partner in the larger scheme of things for the party. “We can interpret it either as an attempt to disrupt the formidable Secular Progressive Alliance led by the DMK or the desperation of a now divided AIADMK which badly wants to distance itself from unpopular BJP. Probably, the AIADMK leaders are frustrated with the BJP for damaging their party and calling it quits. We cannot blame their helplessness. We are highly comfortable with the DMK and the existing alliance,” remarked the Congress senior.
When asked, another senior Congress leader and chairman of State Minorities Commission S Peter Alphonse said, “The AIADMK led by EPS, OPS and the fringe group TTV leads (AMMK) are at the behest of the BJP. The AIADMK of today exists to protect the interests of a handful of ‘leaders’ in it. The party, which bears the name of Anna, has nearly lost its identity. The party is endorsing every political move and stand of the communal BJP. The AIADMK opposed the EWS reservation when it was in power. Now, it is towing the line of the BJP and endorsed the 10 per cent reservation.”
“Social justice, state autonomy and secularism are the basic principles of the AIADMK. The contemporary AIADMK has compromised on all these principles and seconds the communal agenda of the BJP. The ideology of the BJP and Congress are diametrically opposite. How can the Congress align with such a party, which has lost its identity and ideology? It is highly improbable,” he added.