Indian Express

DMK has room for Raja, Baalu, not for Alagiri

No tickets for Napoleon and Ritheesh, who were in touch with Alagiri. Tweet This
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A Raja takes Karunanidhi’s blessings. (PTI) A Raja takes Karunanidhi’s blessings. (PTI)

No tickets for Napoleon and Ritheesh, who were in touch with Alagiri.

The DMK released its list of candidates for the polls Monday, including controversial former union ministers A Raja, Dayanidhi Maran and T R Baalu among eight sitting members whom it has renominated. Among those left out is former union minister M K Alagiri, the elder son of party president M Karunanidhi and now under suspension.

Raja, the Nilgiris MP, was accused in the 2G spectrum sale scam during his tenure as union telecom minister. Dayanidhi Maran, Karunanidhi’s grandnephew, another telecom minister, faces a case for allegedly favouring a Malaysian company that is in partnership with his brother’s media company, the Sun Group. “There is no strong case against them. It will be proved that they did nothing wrong,” Karunanidhi said while releasing the list at the party headquarters.

Baalu has moved from Sriperumbudur near Chennai to Thanjavur in the Cauvery delta, where his fiercest rival would be from within the party, former union minister S S Palanimanickam, who lost the seat to Baalu despite lobbying with the DMK leadership for months.

Union minister S Jegathrakshakan will move from Arakkonam to Sriperumbudur. From the seat Jegathrakshakan vacates, the DMK has fielded young lawyer N R Elango, who has argued several cases against AIADMK general secretary and Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.

There are 12 other advocates in the list of 35, besides three doctors and eight postgraduates. Of the 39 seats in Tamil Nadu, five have been allotted to three alliance partners, while the DMK’s 35th is Puducherry.

Sitting MPs D Napoleon and J K Ritheesh, actors who had called on Alagiri after his suspension, have not been renominated. Alagiri not being part of the list was expected. After an indifferent stint at the Centre, Alagiri himself had resolved not to contest the coming election.

Earlier in the day, Alagiri, asked by the media if he would form a new party, had replied he would speak to his supporters and decide in two months. This was soon interpreted as Alagiri having decided to float a new party in two months. Asked about this, Karunanidhi said: “Please don’t hurt me asking unnecessary questions.”

In reply to a question on supporting Narendra Modi, Karunanidhi said the party wanted a secular government to form at the Centre post-polls, but refused to comment on individuals. On Congress, he said the party was not in a position to comment. On aligning with the Left parties who were ejected from the AIADMK alliance, Karunanidhi said the party will not say, “sorry [no]” if they come, but added that there has not been any contact with these parties.

Karunanidhi said there could be minor changes in the list, a comment that came in the backdrop of speculations all through the continued…

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