AIADMK to commence door-to-door campaign against DMK

The opposition AIADMK in Tamil Nadu will commence a state-wide door-to-door campaign against the ruling DMK after Pongal holidays to highlight the state government’s ‘misrule’ among the people.

AIADMK’s interim general secretary, Edappadi K. Palaniswami, popularly known as EPS, said at a recent party office-bearers’ meeting that a direct grassroots connect with the people of the state is the need of the hour.

AIADMK is in a tight spot after the party’s state coordinator and former Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam, popularly known as OPS, was expelled from the party in July 2021.

Former interim general secretary of the party, V.K. Sasikala, who was a close aide of late J. Jayalalitha, was also expelled from the party along with her nephew, T.T.V. Dhinakaran.

Both OPS and Sasikala belong to the powerful Thevar community that calls the shots in southern Tamil Nadu.

With AIADMK being the preferred political party of the Thevar community, the expulsion of these leaders dealt a body blow to the party in these belts.

At the meeting, EPS told the party leaders that the DMK government under M.K. Stalin is gaining support at the grassroots level and there has to be a strong opposition exposing the ‘misdeeds’ of the government.

The party has to overcome its own organisational weakness to counter the powerful DMK and hence, it has chalked out a strategy of directly meeting the people of the state.

While EPS will not be travelling across the state, he will be part of the direct door-to-door campaign of the party aimed at the 2024 general elections. The party will look to provide sufficient number of seats to the NDA, given the fact that the BJP is looking for a major expansion in south India where it has presence only in Karnataka.

Sources in the AIADMK told IANS that BJP’s national leadership is for unity among the warring factions of the AIADMK, but EPS is not agreeable to this and wants to prove the BJP leadership that he is in full control of the party.

The BJP leadership is trying for a rapprochement between EPS, OPS and Sasikala so that the anti-DMK votes are not split in Tamil Nadu.

G. Manonmani, a professor of political science, told IANS, “The AIADMK is a powerful political entity in Tamil Nadu. However, the party is now divided into several factions and it has to overcome its own organisational issues to pose a challenge to the DMK. The central leadership of the BJP is in for a truce between all the factions of the AIADMK, so that peace prevails and the party functions as a single entity against the DMK.”

The DMK had won 38 of the 39 Lok Sabha seats in the state in the 2019 general elections, and Chief Minister Stalin has openly called upon the party cadres and mid-level leaders to win all the seats for the DMK-led alliance in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

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