Mukul Wasnik’s proposed visit to State has been cancelled

The delay on the part of the Congress in spelling out its stance on the Rajya Sabha polls in Tamil Nadu has sparked speculation that the party could be rethinking its idea of keeping away from the DMK. The party could favour DMK candidate Kanimozhi in the interest of a possible revival of ties for the Lok Sabha polls due next year.

DMK leaders, particularly the party’s Parliamentary party leader T.R. Baalu, have been trying to convince the Congress leaders, including its president Sonia Gandhi and Defence Minister A.K. Antony, to support Ms. Kanimozhi. The DMK and the Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) led by actor Vijayakant are vying with each other to get the votes of the five Congress MLAs. Though the Congress seemed to have more or less made up its mind to support the DMDK candidate A.R. Elangovan, subsequent lobbying by the DMK is said to have had some impact.

“They are putting enormous pressure, citing the advantages of having an alliance with the DMK in future. The delay in announcing the stand makes me wonder whether the high-command is planning to change its stand,” observed a senior TNCC leader, who had suggested to the Delhi leadership that the party should back the DMDK candidate.

DMK leaders who were less confident about Congress support a few days ago now feel the party leadership would take a decision that would benefit both parties in future.

“Going by their electoral performance in the past, the coming together of the Congress and the DMDK will only spoil the prospects of other alliances and in no way help them. We hope the Congress leaders take into consideration the truth in the interests of their own victory in Tamil Nadu,” said another Congress leader, who is sympathetic to an alliance with the DMK. The DMK also believes that the Congress would require its support for the passage of the Food Security Bill and new Land Acquisition Bill.

What is working against the DMK is the opinion of a majority of the Congress leaders in Tamil Nadu who favour supporting the DMDK candidate. There is a view that one phone call from DMK president M. Karunanidhi might change the fortunes of Ms. Kanimozhi, but DMK leaders rule out such a possibility. Meanwhile, a planned visit by Mukul Wasnik, who has replaced Union Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad as general secretary in-charge of party affairs in Tamil Nadu, has been cancelled.

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