CHENNAI: DMK president MK Stalin seems to be Congress' preferred choice to anchor an anti-BJP alliance ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls. Recent political developments suggest that the Congress leadership is keen on having Stalin as the bridge to link other anti-BJP parties such as the Trinamool Congress (TMC), which the Congress and Left parties may not be able to engage directly.
Even after the BJP's recent victories in the Assembly elections in five States, Stalin has not changed his stance on the saffron party. In interviews with the media during the inauguration of the DMK's Delhi office, Stalin had reiterated the need for opposition unity. He rejected West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's idea that regional parties, and not the Congress, should lead from the front against the BJP.
When asked for a comment, DMK's organising secretary RS Bharathy said, "The DMK's responsibility in the national political arena has gone up. Hence, our party president expressed his willingness to stitch together a strong alliance against the BJP."
Left parties have already endorsed Stalin’s role in national politics. D Raja, general secretary of the CPI, had said Stalin has taken some key initiatives at the national level and underlined that the DMK has brought together secular parties in Tamil Nadu against the BJP.
Political observers say both the Congress and the Left prefer to have Stalin as a unifying face since the DMK will be seen as a neutral party.
"The Congress and the Left are ideological opponents. And in some States, there are other anti-BJP parties that are political competitors to the Congress and Left parties. So, having Stalin as a neutral face would work in bringing parties together," said Raghavendra Aara, a journalist who has covered Tamil Nadu politics for more than two decades.
Some of the parties that may prefer to work with the DMK, rather than the Congress or the Left, are TMC, AAP, and Samajwadi Party.
'CM willing to stitch together alliance'
DMK organising secretary RS Bharathy said, "The DMK's responsibility in the national political arena has gone up. Hence, (Stalin) expressed his willingness to stitch together a strong alliance against the BJP"