CHENNAI: For the first time after he became the deputy general secretary of AIADMK (Amma), TTV Dhinakaran on Saturday made a remark on the BJP, saying that the party would not be able to gain a foothold in Tamil Nadu at least for the next 25 years. However, he declined to endorse the remarks of the second-rung leaders of his party that the BJP was behind efforts to split the AIADMK. He said that until ascertaining the veracity of the charge, he wouldn’t level such allegation.
Dhinakaran made these comments in an interview to a Tamil television channel. He said, “The BJP may get a few MLAs or MPs in alliance with some other party. If BJP makes an attempt to split the AIADMK, there will be an upheaval among our cadre. As of now, to me, it is crystal clear that O Panneerselvam and Stalin are acting hand in glove. I am yet to ascertain fully that the BJP is involved in this. When I come to know that the BJP is also involved in it, I will say so.”
Asked whether the party leadership was afraid of criticising the BJP, Dhinakaran said, “Why should we be afraid? We did not show any fear when Narasimha Rao government had foisted cases on us. A case was slapped on me under Cofeposa Act in 1996 and I was imprisoned for one year.”
On the speculation that after the by-election, O Panneerselvam and Edappadi Palaniswami would come together, Dhinakaran said, “I don’t have any such information. But if they come together and ask me to vacate the place, I will leave platform to them with folded hands. As far as I am concerned, there is no compulsion for me to continue in politics at any cost because politics is not my profession and I am not a person to betray my party.”
In this connection, Dhinakaran also said that as an emissary of Panneerselvam, former minister K Pandiarajan had met Health Minister C Vijaya Basker. “But I told Vijaya Baskar to speak to Panneerselvam directly. So, I have an open mind.”