In Aam Aadmi Party’s (AAP) next list of candidates for the Lok Sabha elections, the name of S P Udayakumar could figure since the People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE), whose agitation at the coastal hamlet of Idinthakarai against the adjoining Koodankulam nuclear project entered the 917th day on Monday, has decided to enter electoral politics.
If the AAP’s political affairs committee decides in favour of PMANE’s conditions, Udayakumar may contest from his home constituency of Kanyakumari, while its other leaders, M P Jesuraj and M Pushparayan, may choose to contest from Tirunelveli and Thoothukudi, according to the decision of the people protesting the nuclear plant.
Though AAP leaders, particularly Prashant Bhushan, have been urging Udayakumar to join the party for a long time and even visited Idinthakarai, PMANE had been sceptical about joining hands with a party having a Hindi name and a north Indian political orientation when it was Tamil activist groups that stood by the movement since it began three years ago. So, Udayakumar had sought to know AAP’s views on issues, including nuclear energy.
On February 14, he posted a message in Tamil on Facebook, in which he spoke about his dilemma: To enter electoral politics or not. After seeing the stand of other parties, he said a friendly party was needed at the Centre to mobilise support for Tamil people.
Finding AAP as the only fit party, he said he was prepared to change his mind if leaders of other parties could be lined up to fight for the Tamil people.