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PMK in crisis over electoral alliance in Tamil Nadu

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Shillong, March 18: The political arm of the powerful Vanniyar community of Tamil Nadu, the PMK is divided on the question of forming an alliance in the state.

The party’s top leadership is divided into two — a group owing allegiance to party founder leader Dr. S. Ramadoss wants an electoral understanding with the AIADMK, and the other group led by his son and party state president Dr. Anbumani Ramadoss, who wants a tie-up with the BJP.

A large chunk of leaders, including former state president and MLA, G.K. Mani is supporting an AIADMK alliance.

Ambumani Ramadoss, according to party insiders, is rooting for BJP as there are rumours of him being offered a Cabinet berth in the next Central government. It may be recalled that Dr. Anbumani Ramadoss was a Union Health minister in the Atal Behari Vajpayee government.

Highly placed sources in the PMK told IANS that as far as Tamil Nadu was concerned the PMK would benefit in the long run only through an alliance with the AIADMK and not with the BJP. Most of the senior leaders of the party subscribe to this view.

A senior leader of the PMK while speaking to IANS said, “We don’t know why Anbumani is preferring a BJP alliance. In the long term game, it is the tie-up with the AIADMK that would benefit the PMK and not an alliance with the BJP. Without a Dravidian majority, survival in Tamil Nadu politics is almost zero. PMK has to take several factors into consideration before jumping into a conclusion and in a couple of days a decision will be taken.“

He also said that in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections and the 2021 Assembly elections, BJP and PMK were together in the NDA alliance led by the AIADMK in Tamil Nadu.

The PMK has considerable influence in several northern districts of Tamil Nadu and the decision of electoral tie-up could lead to even a split in the strongholds of the party.

Political analyst, Dr. Krishnan Mahesh while speaking to IANS said, ”Dr. Ramadoss being a shrewd politician is weighing the pros and cons. He is the one who brought prosperity to the Vanniyar people by getting reservations in education and jobs and standing up to the rights of the community. He is highly respected and has a major say in the party and Anbumani will fall in line to the decision of Dr. Ramadoss.“ (IANS)

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