Apart from raising its stakes for the presidential polls, DMK plans to use Karunanidhi's 94th birthday celebrations in its favour amid confusion in ruling AIADMK
Chennai: The frontline opposition party leaders will be in town on Saturday to take part in the birthday bash of 94-year old Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) chief M. Karunanidhi.
Apart from raising its stakes for the presidential polls, which will be held after the term of Pranab Mukherjee comes to an end in July, the DMK also plans to use the opportunity in its favour amid the confusion in the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK).
Earlier this week, asking party cadres to come together in large numbers for the birthday celebrations, M.K . Stalin, working president of DMK and leader of opposition, in a statement said: “Let us make the celebrations a turning point in Indian politics. Let Tamil Nadu’s capital city turn a sea of black and red (the colours of DMK’s flag) and its reverberations reach New Delhi."
According to some senior leaders in the DMK, this grand event would aid in projecting the party as a force to reckon with and would be a launch pad to initiate certain political moves at the national front.
“Of late, we have come out very strongly against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). We have been trying to ensure that our opponent at this stage is the BJP, more than a weak AIADMK, which has become a proxy of the saffron party," said a senior DMK leader.
‘Kalaignar’ Karunanidhi who wasn’t seen in public in the past few months due to health issues will not be part of the celebrations, which will also commemorate the leader’s 60 years as a legislator.
The big event is also an opportunity for Stalin to consolidate his position within the DMK and outside his party, amid the political instability in Tamil Nadu.
“For Stalin, who is functioning in the absence of his father, Karunanidhi, bringing together all national leaders on a common platform is a big success," said the leader.
While Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday greeted Karunanidhi, stating that though there were many opportunities that emerged for him to play at the centre, he remained devoted to Tamil Nadu and for the cause of Tamils.
“Karunanidhi has been one of the two poles that defined the politics of Tamil Nadu," she said.
The guest list for Saturday includes Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar, National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah, Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Sitaram Yechury and Communist Party of India leader D. Raja.
Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad Yadav, who had to cancel his Chennai trip in the last minute due to bad health, conveyed his wishes to Karunanidhi on Friday.
The party has also launched a website “wishthalaivar.com", where supporters can send birthday greetings to the leader.
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