CHENNAI: The ruling DMK’s alliance partners are unhappy over the party’s decision to hold interviews to select candidates for the forthcoming urban local body elections without completing seat-sharing talks with them. Some district units of the DMK have started holding interviews for aspirants over the last few days.
A Congress state functionary told TNIE, “In some districts, DMK functionaries have started officially holding interviews. In other places, DMK party circles are discussing names of possible candidates. Only a few weak seats or those reserved for women and SC/ST candidates or where the DMK is not able to find suitable candidates or is not willing to give the seat to its party cadre are left now.” Because of this, alliance partners would be forced to take those weak seats, he said.
According to a district functionary of the VCK, “The DMK leadership has clearly told its district functionaries to hold talks with alliance partners and allocate seats at the district level. But we couldn’t meet DMK district secretaries to start formal talks for the last 10 days despite our best efforts. We are now confused because we have to choose candidates after getting our share of the seats.”
Voicing displeasure, a CPI State functionary said, “It is their right to conduct interviews for their party candidates. But we expect them to at least inform us of the number of seats we will get in corporations, municipalities and town panchayats. It looks like we may have to wait till the last minute to know. It is pathetic.”This sentiment was shared by other alliance partners, too, and some of them openly expressed disquiet on social media.
Reacting to the concerns raised by alliance partners, one of the State-level functionaries of the DMK told TNIE, “Our leadership has given clear instructions to our district functionaries to accommodate the demands of alliance partners as much as possible. Identifying candidates for the party would help DMK district secretaries to complete seat-sharing talks with allies. I hope that before filing of nominations, seat sharing talks will be completed.”