BJP says it is trying to accommodate PMK

Though the Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK), led by actor Vijayakant, has in principle agreed for an electoral alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Tamil Nadu for the Lok Sabha polls, they could not seal the pact as there are many overlaps between the DMDK and another prospective ally, the PMK, in the wish list of constituencies.

A senior State leader of the BJP told The Hindu that Muralidhar Rao, the national general secretary of the party, met leaders of the DMDK on Tuesday night to iron out issues related to sharing of seats.

The meeting was preceded by parleys between PMK leader and former Union Minister Anbumani Ramadoss, and S.Mohanrajulu, BJP State organising secretary, on February 24 in Chennai.

At the meeting, it had been conveyed to Dr. Anbumani that the DMDK was keen on contesting seven out of the ten constituencies that the PMK had already announced its candidates for.

“Except Tiruvannamalai, Puducherry and Chidambaram, the DMDK wanted all the other seven constituencies. This included Cuddalore, Villupuram, Krishnagiri, Arni, Arakonam, Salem and Mayiladuthurai,” a PMK leader privy to the discussions said. But the PMK is in no mood to give up its claim over these seats as they fall in the Vanniyar heartland. The BJP is also keen on contesting Salem and Mayiladuthurai. “We are trying our best to accommodate the PMK in the alliance,” said the senior BJP leader on condition of anonymity. The leader added that the DMDK had agreed to bring down its demand for seats from 20 to 15.

Meanwhile, PMK sources confirmed that Dr. Anbumani was in New Delhi on Wednesday. But it was not clear whether he would meet anyone in the BJP top brass regarding alliance.

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