AIADMK mocks AMMK for poll debacle

Chennai: The AIADMK on Monday mocked rival TTV Dhinakaran-led Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam for its poll drubbing and asserted that it cannot pose a challenge to the ruling party.

The AIADMK took potshots at Dhinakaran for what it called his “tall talk,” all along, claiming that 1.5 crore party workers were on his side and that AMMK nominees would post impressive poll victories. AIADMK organ ‘Namadhu Puratchi Thalaivi Amma,’ in a write up sarcastically said though Dhinakaran’s nominees lost their deposits in the polls, their boastful claims have not stopped.

Listing out the names of leaders who unsuccessfully tried to challenge AIADMK in the past, including veteran leader R M Veerappan, the daily said “the AMMK has also been decimated” in a similar fashion.

The ruling party newspaper said Dhinakaran and the AMMK should understand that they can neither pose a challenge to the AIADMK nor “lead” their party, which was nurtured by stalwarts, founder M G Ramachandran and former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.

Dhinakaran fielded his nominees as independents in the recently held Lok Sabha election and bypolls to 22 Assembly constituencies.

Though his nominees garnered only about five per cent votes cumulatively and lost their deposits, they preempted the chances of AIADMK’s victory in Parliamentary constituencies like Chidambaram and Ramanathapuram and Assembly seats like Andipatti. The AMMK’s daily ‘Dr Namadhu MGR,’ said the poll debacle was not a “failure, but a stepping stone for success.”

Stressing that it won over 22 lakh votes in the Lok Sabha polls, the party mouthpiece said “the media and other parties cannot underestimate us.” Reaffirming their loyalty to Dhinakaran, the party said both successes and failures are usual in elections and cautioned its workers against switching to the AIADMK, calling it a camp of “betrayers.”

“We will be able to achieve our goal if we do not get bogged down; let us prepare to face the civic polls, let us slog and win,” the AMMK organ told its workers. After the AIADMK factions led by O Panneerselvam and K Palaniswami came together in August 2017 easing out Dhinakaran and his relatives from the AIADMK, the rival leader had been claiming that the party workers were with him and that AMMK led by him represented the “true AIADMK.”

Following the demise of Jayalalithaa in December 2016, factional fued peaked in February 2017 and Panneerselvam walked out to head a separate faction. Though Palaniswami was propped up by Dhinakaran and V K Sasiskala, the Chief Minister fell out with them later and eventually joined hands with Panneerselvam. Dhinakaran had won the December 2017 RK Nagar bypoll here as an independent. The AIADMK was the runner-up and DMK nominee had to forfeit his deposit.