What future holds in store for Dravidian majors

Chennai: DMK has swept the Lok Sabha polls in Tamilnadu and emerged triumphant in 13 out of 22 Assembly constituencies that went for by-election. But its president M K Stalin has very little to rejoice, as both his missions – “Nam Kaiyil Maanila Arasu! Naam Kaattuvathey Mathiya Arasu” (State government in our hands, while Central government will be decided by us) – have failed.

On the other hand, the AIADMK has lost all but one Lok Sabha seat (Theni, in which Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam’s son O P Raveendranath Kumar won) and posted victory in nine Assembly seats. But its government has survived in Tamilnadu, while it is likely to get a Cabinet berth in the Centre.

The election results, which were declared Thursday, have got many messages, or lessons to be more precise, in store for both the Dravidian majors. Though Stalin and Chief Minister Palaniswami have hailed the people’s verdict and declared the outcome as their parties’ victory, they are also aware of the opportunities they lost. For, both the AIADMK and the DMK will not have any say in the Central government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, as the BJP has won with comfortable majority.

While Palaniswami and Panneerselvam have renewed their earlier appeal to those who had “drifted away” from the party due to the “illusions created by selfish individuals,” Stalin has said, “During the next five years, we will work hard to fulfill the promises made and protect the interest of our State!”

There is a lot to read between the above lines, if one is to go by what sources in the AIADMK and the DMK say. As reported by News Today earlier, the high commands of these parties had received complaints from cadres about non-performers and cheaters, soon after elections. Now that the results are out, strong action is expected to be taken against ‘betrayers’.

Also, AIADMK and DMK leaderships have taken note of votes polled by Kamal Haasan’s Makkal Needhi Maiam, Seeman’s Naam Tamizhar Katchi and TTV Dhinakaran’s AMMK.

These fledgling outfits, though not an immediate threat to the big parties, have been posing themselves as alternatives to the AIADMK and the DMK, thus attracting new and disappointed voters. With superstar Rajinikanth getting ready to float his own party, another threat too is awaiting Stalin and Palaniswami-Panneerselvam.

The future of the AIADMK and the DMK lies in how its supremos rework their strategies, rejuvenate their cadres and reposition their parties.

M Bhaskar Sai