MDMK meet to discuss continuance in NDA

A majority of MDMK workers want the party to quit the NDA, says a senior leader

Updated - May 06, 2016 02:23 am IST

Published - December 08, 2014 01:54 am IST - CHENNAI

Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader Vaiko. File

Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader Vaiko. File

The composition of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in Tamil Nadu may change on Monday with the Vaiko-led MDMK, which contested the Lok Sabha elections as an ally of the BJP, set to reconsider staying in the front.

Sources in the MDMK said the alliance would be the major issue of discussion at a meeting of the district secretaries here. “A majority of the MDMK workers want the party to quit the NDA. Whether this is the right time to do so is to be decided,” a senior leader said.

Tension between the BJP and the MDMK reached a new high over the past two weeks after BJP national secretary H. Raja warned Mr. Vaiko in harsh terms against criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Mr. Vaiko, too, has been on a war path with the Centre since Mr. Modi’s swearing-in held in May, for which Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa was invited.

There is also a growing recognition within the MDMK of the need for A political realignment before the 2016 Assembly elections to take on the ruling AIADMK, the sources said.

Last month, Mr. Vaiko, after a gap of eight years, met DMK treasurer M.K. Stalin at the wedding of PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss’ daughter. Though he was quick to dismiss it as a courteous meeting, the growing strain in his relationship with the BJP led to intense speculation.

This apart, the PMK, led by S. Ramadoss, too has grown critical of the BJP government. At a recent meeting, most leaders wanted the OBC Vanniyar-dominated party to lead an alliance for the Assembly elections and declare Mr. Anbumani chief ministerial candidate. While the BJP treated this as rhetoric to boost the cadre morale, its leaders saw in it a strong signal from the only ally which was able to score in the Lok Sabha elections.

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