Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) supremo M Karunanidhi renominated former telecom minister and 2G scam accused A Raja for the April 24 Lok Sabha polls in Tamil Nadu while sent a strong message to rebels in the party by denying tickets to the supporters of M K Alagiri.
Another former telecom minister and also an accused in the 2G scam, Dayanidhi Maran, too was renominated by the party chief.
Raja (Nilagiri-SC) and Maran (Central Chennai) have been allotted the same constituencies they represent in the current Lok Sabha.
DMK in its list of 35 candidates released here, including for the lone seat in Puducherry, rejected renomination to 10 sitting MPs and favoured only eight, including T R Baalu to seek re-election.
Karunanidhi while releasing the list at a hurriedly convened press conference, said five seats have been allocated to its allies VCK, IUML, MMK and PT.
The party not only denied ticket to Madurai constituency MP and its strongman in southern parts Alagiri, whom it suspended from DMK in January for acts of indiscipline, but also to his supporters, D Napolean (Perambalur) and J K Rithieesh (Ramanathapuram).
Baalu who represented Sriperumbudur Lok Sabha seat has shifted to Thanjavur. T K S Elangovan will contest from South Chennai instead of North Chennai, the seat he currently holds.
Answering queries from reporters, Karunanidhi stoutly defended fielding of Raja and Maran, saying "charges against them are weak".
Evading a direct reply to Alagiri's reported remarks that he was in touch with his supporters to float a new party, and that he may take a decision in a month or two about it, the DMK patriarch shot back saying, "this (press conference) is intended to announce the DMK candidates list. Please do not ask hurting questions".
He announced V Veluchamy for Madurai, presently being represented by Alagiri.
Flanked by his son and daughter, Stalin and Kanimozhi, besides DMK general secretary K Anbazhagan among others, Karunanidhi said today's list was subject to change, seen as an indication that some more allies could join his party-led Democratic Progressive Alliance (DPA).
He however said no parleys had been held with the two Left parties, CPM and CPI, who had walked out of AIADMK alliance last week, miffed over the Jayalalithaa-led party's approach towards seat-sharing talks.
Asked if his party would set a time-frame for the Left to consider joining DPA, he said a 'democratic and straight forward' party like his DMK cannot set terms in this regard.
Tamil Nadu has 39 Lok Sabha seats.
When reporters sought to know if Congress could join DPA, he said he had only come across media reports in this regard.