The Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday began seat-sharing talks with Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam for the Lok Sabha polls even while hoping Vijayakant’s Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam and the Pattali Makkal Katchi would come on board the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance. Addressing a press conference here, State BJP president Pon. Radhakrishnan and MDMK general secretary Vaiko expressed happiness at the coming together of the parties.

Noting that ties between the parties remained cordial even when they were not alliance partners, the BJP leader said the talks would continue. He also invited Mr. Vaiko and MDMK cadre to the meeting of his party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in Chennai on February 8.

On the different viewpoints of the two parties on several issues, Mr. Vaiko said not all parties and their policies were alike. “Our sole aim is to defeat the Congress and its alliance partners too,” he said, pointing out that during the UPA regime, the country was witness to Himalayan-proportion scams and did nothing for Tamils in Sri Lanka. On the attempts to woo DMDK, he said, the BJP was working for victory and MDMK’s support was unconditional. It would be a resounding win for the NDA in the general elections, he said, declaring that the trend in Tamil Nadu was also set to change. Asked whether he would contest the election, Mr. Vaiko said it was up to the party to decide, even as the BJP leader said he wanted the MDMK leader to contest.

To queries on efforts to rope in DMDK, Mr. Radhakrishnan said: “We are in talks with leaders next to Captain [Vijayakant] of that party and hope DMDK would come with us.” Talks with PMK, he added, were in progress. About attempts by Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam to join hands with DMDK, he said the DMK could not be stopped from doing so but the BJP hoped Vijayakant would not go with that party.

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