Thangkabalu's suggestion for rebuilding Congress
Enthused by the “decent performance” of the Congress in local body elections despite going it alone, TNCC president K.V. Thangkabalu on Monday said that the party can secure the people's confidence and emerge as an alternative to the AIADMK and the DMK only if it continues to face elections on its own.
“In my considered opinion, the Congress party in Tamil Nadu should follow Rahul Gandhi's Uttar Pradesh experiment. The Congress on its own won 23 Lok Sabha seats, besides winning one more seat in a by-election. In Tamil Nadu we can build the organisation by following the UP model,” he told reporters at Sathyamurthy Bhavan.
“Accorded third place”
Mr. Thangkabalu argued that the Congress should be accorded the third place instead of the Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) in the local body polls because of its “independent” performance.
“While the DMDK went to elections in alliance with the CPI (M), the Independents could not be considered as a group.”
Had the Congress contested as part of an alliance it would have been allotted about 20 to 20 per cent seats and many Congressmen would not have got an opportunity to enter the fray.
“The party would have fared well but for the existing political situation and lack of proper party organisation,” he said, stressing that local body elections could not be a yardstick to measure a party's strength and future.
Change of views
“Voters' views change depending on the nature of the elections. In Lok Sabha polls they voted for the Congress and in the Assembly they voted for a change in Tamil Nadu.”
Asked what he meant by the lack of proper party organisation, he said there were no office-bearers at various levels in the party because inner party elections could not be conducted for some reasons.
As regards the allegation by former TNCC president E.V.K.S. Elangovan and Youth Congress leader Yuvaraj that he was to be blamed for the poor performance of the party in the local body polls, Mr. Thangkabalu said all leaders should take responsibility for the outcome.
“I set an example by resigning my post after the party's defeat in the Assembly elections. I ask the leaders of the Congress party to air their views in the party organisation instead of going to the media with the complaints.”