India-Pak tension & DMDK’s demands put spanner in alliance announcements

Chennai: The alliance express of Tamilnadu, which took off on top gear more than a week ago with AIADMK and DMK signing pacts with partners, faced a sudden halt because of two reasons – tension in India-Pakistan border and the indecisiveness of Vijayakanth’s DMDK.

However, with Pakistan releasing IAF pilot Abhinandan, it is set to chug again, sources in DMK and AIADMK camps say, adding that they would finalise their allies in the next few days.

A highly placed source in the DMK states, “We had offered reasonable number of seats and given enough time to DMDK. However, they made unrealistic demands without understanding their strengths and weaknesses. We have decided to move forward. All these days, other parties in the alliance (MDMK, VCK, CPI(M), CPI) were waiting for DMDK’s decision. Now, we will go ahead signing seat sharing deals with them. Everything will be finalised next week.”

On the other hand, the AIADMK camp is optimistic of roping in DMDK. “Our doors are open and we have already made our offer clear to the DMDK. We are hopeful of getting a positive response from them soon. Once the DMDK enters the team, our campaign will kick off. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam are meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi (in Kanyakumari) today, during which important things about the alliance and strategies are to be discussed,” said an AIADMK source.

Meanwhile, Vijayakanth today chaired a meet with DMDK office-bearers at the party headquarters to get their inputs on alliance. Sources said his party would spell out its decision “at the earliest.”

M Bhaskar Sai