Amid reports of a Cabinet expansion at the Centre, Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office V. Narayanasamy on Tuesday met DMK leader M. Karunanidhi for a discussion on the subject. However, it is learnt that the DMK is not keen on getting more berths.
Though vacancies in the Cabinet caused by the resignations of A. Raja and Dayanidhi Maran, in the wake of the 2G scam, remain unfilled, the party has so far not come forward seeking replacements for them.
According to sources in the party, Mr. Karunanidhi has been unhappy with the Congress high command in recent times, and even extended his support to the Opposition-backed national strike last week against foreign direct investment in retail and the diesel price hike.
A senior Congress leader in the State said the Prime Minister had deputed Mr. Narayanasamy to meet Mr. Karunanidhi, as the strain in the Congress-DMK relationship was growing. The meeting took place at the DMK leader’s CIT Colony residence here. “As far as we know, the DMK did not show any interest in taking more berths in the Ministry,” the senior Congress leader said.
One DMK leader said a section in the party was keen on getting more Cabinet posts, but the leadership was not in favour of the idea.
A few days ago, when asked about the party’s plans in the event of a Cabinet expansion, Mr. Karunanidhi said such issues would be decided in the party’s executive committee and general council meetings.
“This means he is not interested in expanding the DMK’s presence in the Ministry. The party is unlikely to benefit by making a few individuals ministers in UPA-II at this stage,” he said.