RK Nagar and after: DMK to go soul-searching to restore cadre morale

Stung by the humiliation in the RK Nagar Assembly bypoll where its candidate lost his deposit, DMK is worried about the consequent dip in cadre morale.

Published: 27th December 2017 03:02 AM  |   Last Updated: 27th December 2017 10:51 AM   |  A+A-

DMK leader MK Stalin

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Stung by the humiliation in the RK Nagar Assembly bypoll where its candidate lost his deposit, DMK is worried about the consequent dip in cadre morale.

“We are fully aware of the impact the defeat in RK Nagar is going to have on our cadre. We need to keep their morale high as our party is cadre-based,” senior DMK leader and Rajya Sabha member T K S Elangovan told Express.

To analyse to defeat, the party intends to do some honest soul-searching. “We are going to do self-introspection in a genuine manner to get to the bottom of the issue. We want to find out what exactly we lacked in matching winner T T V Dhinakaran’s firepower.”

T K S Elangovan

A three-member probe panel set up by DMK working president M K Stalin will begin its exercise on Wednesday. Certain top leaders feel they erred in gauging the pulse of the voters in RK Nagar.

Also, the decision to field a weak candidate, Marudhu Ganesh, to take on the likes of Dhinakaran (independent) and E Madhusudhanan (AIADMK) meant they squandered away the initiative from the very first moment, sources said.

Stalin, they said, was very upset with the outcome. And poll managers invited him only for a couple of days to hit campaign trail in the constituency.

The bypoll happened because of the death of then chief minister J Jayalalithaa. The fact that even minority voters shunned DMK and opted for Dhinakaran has stunned the leadership. They reckon the 24,651 votes polled by Marudhu Ganesh represent the diehard DMK cadre. He secured just half of what DMK candidate Shimla Muthuchozhan got against  Jayalalithaa in 2016. Also, women in DMK families were perhaps swayed by Dhinakaran for one reason or the other.

Party sources said former MLA V S Babu, who recently hopped to AIADMK before siding with Dhinakaran, played a crucial role in his war room in devising the strategy to lure voters, predominantly daily wager workers.

Irked by the criticism of DMK having a tacit understanding with Dhinakaran, Stalin on Tuesday said, “Both the candidates of AIADMK factions spend money in crores in RK Nagar to purchase democracy. The constituency fell victim to money power. This is being glossed over and a well-planned misinformation campaign is on to throw mud on DMK.”

The Congress too formed a five-member committee to go into the causes that led to the poor show of alliance partner DMK in RK Nagar. TNCC president S Thirunavukkarasar said the committee will be headed by vice-president R Damodharan. The  panel will submit its report in four days.

How it lost the plot
Weak DMK candidate gave the game away to the opponents
Minorities, DMK’s traditional vote bank, this time opted for TTV
Even women in DMK families voted for the other side perhaps because of some inducement or other

One more MP meets TTV, but says he continues in AIADMK

Chennai: A couple of days after T T V Dhinakaran won the by-election in RK Nagar Assembly constituency here, one more MP, N Gokulakrishnan representing the Puducherry parliamentary constituency, called on him and held discussions. However, speaking to mediapersons, Gokulakrishnan said he was continuing in AIADMK and that his meeting with Dhinakaran was a ‘courtesy call’. Rajya Sabha member Sasikala Pushpa had called on Dhinakaran on Monday.

Earlier, B Senguttuvan, MP from Vellore, met him. P Nagarajan, MP from Coimbatore is also a supporter of Dhinakaran.   Of the 50 MPs of AIADMK in Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha, Sasikala Pushpa was expelled from the party last year. After several developments in AIADMK this year, till last week, 48 MPs were supporting  the ruling AIADMK and one MP Nagarajan was backing Dhinakaran. Now, four MPs are with him.

Jaya video clipping submitted to inquiry commission

Chennai: P Vetrivel, a disqualified MLA,  who a few days ago released a video clipping of what he claimed was one taken when the late Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa was in a hospital, handed over the footage to the inquiry commission headed by a retired judge A Arumughaswamy on Tuesday. 

This follows summons issued by the commission to Vetrivel two days ago. Advocates of Vetrivel submitted the video clipping to the commission. The hearing of the commission is scheduled to resume on January 2 and already it had issued summons to V K Sasikala, Apollo hospital chief Prathap C Reddy and his daughter Preetha Reddy.

Sasikala Pushpa files plaint about receiving death threats

Chennai: Member of Parliament Sasikala Pushpa, has filed a complaint with city police alleging she was receiving death threats over phone. She was expelled from AIADMK last year. Police said Sasikala received one such call at her residence on Tuesday, which was attended by her maid. The caller threatened to kill Sasikala. Following this, a complaint was registered.  This comes, a day after she met TTV Dhinakaran and congratulated him on his victory in the RK Nagar by-election.

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