The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam's south zone organising secretary and Union Fertilizers and Chemicals Minister, M.K. Alagiri, set off ripples in the party after he told a Tamil magazine that he will not accept anyone as leader after Chief Minister and DMK president M. Karunanidhi.
“I would have been about 10 years old...It was then that Thalaivar [Mr. Karunanidhi] explained to me the Dravidian ethos and about Periyar. At that time Periyar was the one who seemed like the leader to me. After him, Anna's speeches and writing attracted me and I accepted Anna as my leader.
“After Anna, Kalaignar has been my leader for ever. When Kalaignar is around there is no need to think of anyone else as leader. But, after Kalaignar, in the DMK, I will not accept anyone else as my leader. I do not think that any one has the competence and talent to fill Kalaignar's space,” he told Junior Vikatan when asked whom he would accept as leader in the DMK after Mr. Karunanidhi.
According to party leaders, the latest issue of India Today (Tamil) which features Mr. Stalin and runs the caption Mudisooda Mudalvar (The uncrowned Chief Minister), was not well received by Mr. Alagiri. In one instance, the magazine compares Mr. Stalin with Mr. Karunanidhi and concludes that he is very different from Mr. Karunanidhi in character. The instance cited (that Mr. Stalin was busy directing arrangements at Tiruchi ahead of the inauguration of the Kalaignar housing scheme and hence did not attend a function in Chennai where a book about him was being released) seemed an attempt to make it appear that he was better than his father in some respects, said sources close to Mr. Alagiri.
Mr. Karunanidhi reacted on Wednesday morning saying even he could not put a date to “after me.”
Alagiri in Australia
Mr. Alagiri is in Australia and will be back on March 31. Mr. Karunanidhi and Mr. Stalin are campaigning in Pennagaram.