BJP firm in supporting AINRC; PMK sticks to stand

Even as the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK), which is part of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), has disputed the allocation of Puducherry seat to the All India N.R. Congress (AINRC), other partners of the NDA on Friday backed the AINRC candidate R. Radhakrishnan.

The day witnessed hectic activities in the NDA camp. Minutes after PMK organiser R.K.R. Anandaraman addressed a press conference where he disputed the claim of the AINRC and the BJP on allotment of Puducherry seat, a team of AINRC led by V. Baalan, general secretary, visited the BJP office. They held a discussion with BJP’s local unit president Viweswaran and other frontline leaders. The BJP leaders reaffirmed their support to the AINRC candidate.

Similarly, a few other alliance partners, including the India Jananayaga Katchi (IJK), went to the AINRC office and offered support. The Desiya Murpokku Dravidar Kazhagam (DMDK) and the Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) also reportedly offered support to the AINRC candidate.

Asked about questions raised by the PMK, Mr. Visweswaran said that the AINRC had been formally inducted into the NDA and BJP president Rajnath Singh had also announced that the Puducherry seat had been allotted to AINRC.

The decision was taken only after consulting alliance partners. The State unit of the BJP would fully back the announcement.

When his attention was drawn to the announcement of PMK to contest in Puducherry, Mr. Visweswaran said there was no change in BJP’s stand. It was the time to work for the success of the NDA’s candidate.

However, negotiation would be conducted with the PMK’s local unit. An amicable decision would be taken within a couple of days.

However, Mr. Anandaraman objected to the claim of AINRC that it has been allotted Puducherry seat.

Speaking to reporters here on Friday, he said that though Chief Minister N. Rangasamy met Mr. Singh in Chennai, no announcement was made regarding Puducherry. In fact, senior BJP leaders had promised that the Puducherry seat would be allotted to the PMK after discussion with the alliance partners.

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