Vijayakant’s DMDK in talks with AIADMK for poll tie-up

Thursday, February 24, 2011

CHENNAI - It’s official. Actor-turned-politician Vijayakant-promoted DMDK has decided to ally with Tamil Nadus major opposition party AIADMK to fight the ensuing assembly polls against the ruling DMK, which is supported by the Congress.

Representatives of the DMDK and the AIADMK met at the latters party headquarters Thursday to explore a poll alliance.

“Yes, in principle we want to ally with AIADMK. Today (Thursday), we had just a preliminary meeting with AIADMKs representatives. We have not discussed any seat sharing details,” DMDK presidium chairman Panruti S. Ramachandran told IANS after the discussions.

Queried about the rumours of DMDKs demand of 41 Assembly seats and one Rajya Sabha seat he said: There is no credence to such rumours. We did not discuss details. In principle we want to go together with AIADMK in the ensuing assembly polls.

On the issue of DMDKs vote share going down if it aligns with AIADMK, Ramachandran said: “Ours is not like any other party based on caste, creed or religion. Our base is youth. We represent the youth. As per our estimation we will get around 15 percent vote share if we stand alone.”

According to him, on its own, his party got an eight percent vote share in the 2006 Assembly polls and 10.5 percent in the 2009 Lok Sabha polls.

“In normal course, we would get around 15 percent in the coming elections. But with the alliance, the vote share is expected to shoot up and not otherwise. Further the youth is with us, a confident Ramachandran said.

Asked whether the DMDK would lose its identity and become like several other small parties forced to align with DMK or AIADMK, he said: “The people of Tamil Nadu want a change in the government. Suppose we stand alone, that does not give the people a hope. But by entering into an alliance there people have the hope of voting out the present government.”

The formal beginning of talks between the two parties comes after several days of suspense and backroom parleys. Thursday was also AIADMK chief J.Jayalalithaa’s 63rd birthday.

The AIADMK, which has held talks with the two communist parties and long-time ally MDMK, has till date reached agreement for eight seats with five parties, allotting two to the PT, three to the MNMK and one each to the Republican Party of India, the All India Forward Bloc and the AIMMK.

–Indo Asian News Service

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