M.K. Stalin, widely perceived as the next leader of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), sees a definite role for regional parties in government formation at the Centre post-election and sounds optimistic that his party will gain in the multi-cornered contest shaping up in Tamil Nadu.

Multi-cornered contest

“The DMK will benefit from a multi-cornered contest,” Mr. Stalin, 61, told The Hindu here on the eve of launching its election campaign from Kanyakumari, when asked who would stand to gain from the new front formed by the Bharatiya Janata Party in the State.

Mr. Stalin, who is DMK’s treasurer and youth wing leader, rejected the impression that a “Modi wave is building up in Tamil Nadu,” and said, “It is a media creation.”

He stressed that the DMK did not suffer any disadvantage by not projecting any specific prime ministerial candidate in the campaign.

Mr. Stalin stoutly defended his party’s recent decision to steer clear of both the Congress and the BJP, and emphasised that contrary to initial assessments, he could see a “clear anti-Jayalalithaa wave” wherever he went.

The former Deputy Chief Minister, whose rivalry with his elder brother M.K. Alagiri seems to run as a perennial subtext, dismissed apprehensions that intra-party discontent over selection of candidates would undermine the DMK’s performance. “In a major political party like the DMK, such differences are inevitable,” he said.

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