While for months the Manithaneya Makkal Katchi (MMK) indicated that it would want to be with the AIADMK for the upcoming Assembly elections, the lack of any concrete response from the ruling party has pushed the Muslim-dominated outfit into the DMK alliance.
MMK president M.H. Jawahirullah pulled a big surprise on Saturday when he tuned up at DMK treasurer M.K. Stalin's house at noon. He also met DMK president M. Karunanidhi later.
Sources in the MMK said though it sent explicit feelers, the AIADMK showed no concrete interest in drafting the party into its alliance. “Despite AIADMK meeting smaller parties over the last few days, the MMK did not get any response,” said a leader on condition of anonymity.
Mr. Jawahirullah though maintained that it was a decision made after wide consultations with party leaders. “Our leaders felt an alliance with the AIADMK may not be ideal as we differ on some crucial issues like prohibition,” he added.
The MMK contested the 2011 elections as part of the AIADMK alliance and won two of the three seats it contested.
In the 2014 Parliamentary elections, it moved to the DMK side and lost the lone constituency it fought. The party has a sizeable presence in the southern districts, particularly in Madurai and Ramanathapuram.
With the MMK’s entry and the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) already stating that it would be with the DMK alliance, the front now has the two biggest Muslim parties in Tamil Nadu on its side.
Muslims constitute about 6 per cent of the State's population according to Census 2011.