RK Nagar bypoll: Broad Opposition alliance building around DMK

Pro-Centre stand might come back to haunt ruling party as Opposition attracts support of all entities big and small

Published: 28th November 2017 01:51 AM  |   Last Updated: 28th November 2017 08:33 AM   |  A+A-

DMK working president M K Stalin greeting N Marudhu Ganesan after announcing him as the candidate for RK Nagar bypoll on Saturday | Express

Express News Service

CHENNAI : With a little over three weeks left for the much awaited RK Nagar by-election, all political parties are sharpening their strategies and working on alliances. While the ruling AIADMK is yet to decide on its candidate, its arch rival DMK is building a broad alliance of opposition parties for the December 21 bypoll. Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK), led by Thol Thirumavalavan, was the first party outside the DMK alliance to extend support to the DMK candidate. CPI followed suit with its State executive council on Monday deciding to throw its weight behind the Dravidian major.

“The political necessity to check the harmful advance of the BJP, which is anti-democratic, anti-people and anti-Tamil, has become an inevitable necessity. The BJP-led Centre has turned the AIADMK men running the government as their bonded labourers. Under these circumstances, the CPI believes the need for building up a broader alliance of secular, democratic and Left forces,” a resolution stated.
“In this situation, the party decides to support the DMK candidate in RK Nagar to defeat AIADMK, which is controlled by the BJP, the resolution added.”

However, CPM is yet to firm up its stand. Last time around, it had entered the RK Nagar fray before the bypoll was countermanded. The State committee scheduled to meet in Tirupur on November 30 to take the call. DMK, however, hopes to rope in CPM. “Our party hopes all opposition parties, except BJP, DMDK and PMK, would support our candidate. We are confident of getting the support of the CPM as well because the party has been with us on common issues,” senior DMK leader and Rajya Sabha member T K S Elangovan said.

The broad opposition alliance is aimed at checking ‘misgovernance’ and counter the ambitious BJP from pushing ‘communal agenda’. “Communal forces pose a bigger threat while the Edappadi-led government has completely surrendered the interests of the State. It is the need of the hour to check this harmful trend,” noted R Mutharasan, State secretary of the CPI. He added, “The bypoll is an opportunity to teach a fitting lesson to the ruling party.”

Deputy general secretary of VCK ‘Aloor’ Shanavas echoed these views. “If the opposition parties do not shed their differences now, they will never be able to redeem Tamil Nadu from a severe crisis,” Shanavas observed. He noted that the unscrupulous manoeuvring of the Centre to make the EPS government dance to its tunes, pushing IAS officers of its choice to key positions and infringing upon the State’s rights would surely reflect in the polls.

Political and economic commentator Venkatesh Athreya had a different take. The outcome of a by-election will not make much impact on the State’s politics. “Argument for opposition unity must be based on policies. The bypoll must be utilised as an opportunity to push the policies,” he stressed.
Having the Congress, the Indian Union Muslim League and the Manithaneya Makkal Katchi on board, the DMK has gained an extra bit of muscle with all the additional support.

Dravidar Kazhagam too in its bag
Chennai
: Dravidar Kazhagam (DK) president K Veeramani on Monday announced support to the DMK candidate in RK Nagar Assembly segment. In a statement, he said the electorate must utilise the opportunity to hit both the AIADMK and BJP at one stroke and noted that the outcome of the by-polls would be such that self-respect, rationalism, social justice and secularism prevailing in Tamil Nadu are safeguarded. 

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