CHENNAI:The assertion of DMK treasurer MK Stalin that his party will have an ideological alliance with the Congress to defeat the AIADMK has come as another indication of the growing proximity between the two parties which are hunting for allies ever since their huge defeats in the 2011 Assembly and 2014 Parliament elections.
The views expressed by Stalin and TNCC leader EVKS Elangovan come as a sequel to the resolution passed at the TNCC executive meeting last month that the party would work to dislodge the AIADMK from power in the forthcoming Assembly elections. DMK president M Karunanidhi too had praised Elangovan on several occasions for criticising the State government and frequently cited him in his statements.
Together, the DMK and Congress fought four consecutive elections from 2004. While the combine tasted success in the 2004 and 2009 Parliament elections, as also in the 2006 Assembly elections. It was routed in the 2011 Assembly elections and the two parted ways ahead of the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.
Even as leaders of the two parties say they are confident about defeating the AIADMK, political observers are of the view that a combination of DMK and Congress alone would not be able to take on the might of the AIADMK which crushed opponents in the 2014 Parliament elections. The DMK needs more parties in its fold as the Congress has lost its appeal with the masses.
Political commentator ‘Aazhi’ Senthilnathan says, “There was a time when an alliance with Congress ensured victory for the coalition. But the Congress’ vote bank has eroded in the last ten years. The DMK-Congress combine cannot be considered a winning combination any more and they need more parties in their fold.”
The DMK entered into an alliance with the Congress for the first time in 1971, allotting nine Parliament seats and no Assembly seats for its national ally headed by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. In 1980 Assembly elections, the DMK and Congress renewed their ties and the latter contested in 112 seats, polling 20.92 votes. After a gap of over two decades, the two parties came together in the 2004 Parliament elections and swept the polls. The Congress garnered 14.4 per cent votes in the 2004 Lok Sabha polls and in the 2006 Assembly elections, it secured 8.38 per cent votes contesting 48 seats.