The expulsion of Madurai strongman M K Alagiri from the DMK has met with no surprise from the cadre. They, however, feel the issue could have been brought to a close sooner, so that it wouldn’t cast a shadow on the party’s run-up to the Lok Sabha elections.
Functionaries, however, maintain that Alagiri’s exit would cause no damage to the party’s fortunes in the southern districts.
“There will be no impact. This was inevitable. That’s why we are seeing many of his (Alagiri’s) loyalists switching sides to the Stalin camp. They realise that if they want to stay in the DMK they have to accept Stalin as their leader,” a senior party functionary told Express.
He added that the party is setting its house in order and that the coming Lok Sabha elections had no bearing on the decision.Mid and lower level functionaries, however, seem to have a different view.
They think the party would have been better off if the expulsion had been announced before the party embarked on its Lok Sabha campaign.
“Our leadership has asked us to focus on issues, and raise them in even the smallest campaign activities. We will now definitely be asked about this when we go to the field for campaigning,” said a mid-level functionary based in Chennai.
“We all expected this matter to end this way. We feel this decision could have been made earlier. It doesn’t help to look divided just before an election,” pitched in another cadre from Cuddalore.
“There is no point in having the lower rungs of the party work hard for an election if movements at the top could derail these efforts,” added the , based in Cuddalore-based functionary.
“Most members of the party now function with the understanding that we have to be firmly loyal to the leader’s family. But it does no good to make a public show of it,” he said.