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Udhayanidhi is DMK youth wing secretary

He takes over the post his father Stalin held for 30 years

July 05, 2019 12:45 am | Updated 07:55 am IST - CHENNAI

Udhayanidhi Stalin with father M.K. Stalin in Chennai on Thursday.

Udhayanidhi Stalin with father M.K. Stalin in Chennai on Thursday.

Tamil film actor-producer Udhayanidhi Stalin, son of DMK president M.K. Stalin, was on Thursday appointed secretary of the party’s youth wing.

He replaces former MLA Vellakoil M.P. Saminathan, who was appointed to the post after Mr. Stalin stepped down in early 2017 to take over as working president of the party. Mr. Stalin had held the post of youth wing leader for over 30 years.

DMK general secretary K. Anbazhagan, in a statement, said: “Mr. Saminathan has been relieved from the post of DMK youth wing secretary and Mr. Udhayanidhi has been appointed [in his place] as per Rule 18 and 19 of the party. Mr. Saminathan has been made member of the high-level executive committee of the party.” The announcement was greeted with bursting of crackers and distribution of sweets by jubilant DMK cadre.

The party seems to have plans to revamp the youth wing under Mr. Udhayanidhi’s leadership, who will chair his first meeting of the youth wing in Chennai on July 6.

Deputy secretary of the youth wing Suba. Chandrasekar was relieved from his post. He will function as a member of the party’s constitution amendment committee. Incidentally, Mr. Stalin had earlier categorically ruled out the possibility of his son or son-in-law entering politics. Mr. Udhayanidhi was until now functioning as managing director of Murasoli , the party organ launched by his late grandfather M. Karunanidhi.

A year ago, Mr. Udhayanidhi had told The Hindu that being the son of the party leader would not provide him any advantages. “There are disadvantages. A person who sincerely does party work will get recognition. But in my case, I will always be seen as scion of the political family and any recognition will be attributed to my family connection and not my work,” he argued.

An opportunity

The recent Lok Sabha polls offered him an opportunity to take a plunge into politics. He toured the State and actively campaigned for candidates of the DMK and its alliance partners. His campaign also speeded the process of his elevation in the party, as soon after the elections, the party’s district secretaries wrote to Mr. Stalin, seeking his appointment as youth wing head.

On Thursday, several senior leaders, including former ministers K.N. Nehru, K. Ponmudi and E.Ve. Velu, made a beeline to his residence and greeted him.

MDMK general secretary Vaiko also welcomed the actor’s appointment, contending that he had already won a place in the hearts of the people of Tamil Nadu by his acting skills.

“His campaign during the election was appreciated by the people. He is the MD of Murasoli and will also serve well as the secretary of the youth wing,” he added.

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