Alcohol, inter-caste romance, law to prevent atrocities against Dalits and vote-for-cash have always been the four pet peeves of PMK founder Dr S Ramadoss. Now, sounding the bugle for the Parliamentary poll battle, he is seeking to turn the same ‘four foul things’ into the Vanniyar women’s collective peeve by serenading them with a different political music.
Seeking votes for his ‘mango’ symbol in the exclusive women’s conferences that his party organises in various places in the Vanniyar belt, Ramadoss does not indulge in the usual political harangue. Instead he interacts with them, even allowing some women to come on stage and share their plight.
At Jayamkondan, an elderly woman broke down narrating how she lost her husband to alcohol and how her son too had fallen prey to the spirit, adding that her family was now in shambles, drawing tears from the eyes of the women participants. Much like a teacher, Ramadoss explains how their aspiration to see their children as IAS, IPS officers, doctors and engineers are spoiled by boys who lure their daughters in the name of love. He asks them if he is right or wrong in speaking out against love marriages.
Taking the overwhelming ‘right’ cries from the all-woman crowd of a few thousands as cue, he goes on and on to drive home the point that they would get succor from social evils like alcohol only if they vote for him. He also tells them selling votes for money is like selling children.