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Business News/ Politics / News/  'BJP can't set foot here': AIADMK and BJP snapping ties in Tamil Nadu explained
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'BJP can't set foot here': AIADMK and BJP snapping ties in Tamil Nadu explained

AIADMK leader Palaniswami had met Union Home Minister and BJP leader Amit Shah, a few days ago, triggering speculations that the saffron party and the Dravidian party are considering a coalition for Tamil Nadu. On Monday, AIADMK leader D Jayaram announced that they are snapping ties with BJP

Notably, the AIADMK and BJP relationship had come into question during the Sanatan Dharma remark row that began with DMK leader and Tamil Nadu Chief minister's son Udhayanidhi Stalin's remark. (PTI)Premium
Notably, the AIADMK and BJP relationship had come into question during the Sanatan Dharma remark row that began with DMK leader and Tamil Nadu Chief minister's son Udhayanidhi Stalin's remark. (PTI)

AIADMK General Secretary Edappadi K Palaniswami had met Union Home Minister and Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Amit Shah in New Delhi, a few days ago, triggering speculations that the saffron party and the Dravidian party are considering a coalition for Tamil Nadu. However, on Monday, senior AIADMK leader D Jayaram announced that they are snapping ties with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's party. 

This brought an end to an unending bickering between the AIADMK and the BJP that ensued in the previous few days. On Monday, D Jayaram said that AIADMK cannot tolerate any affront to the late Chief Minister Dravidian stalwart CN Annadurai,  fondly addressed as Anna (elder brother), EV Ramasamy Periyar and late AIADMK veterans MG Ramachandran (MGR) and J Jayalalithaa.

Notably, the AIADMK and BJP relationship had come into question during the Sanatan Dharma remark row that began with DMK leader and Tamil Nadu Chief minister's son Udhayanidhi Stalin's remark. 

Annamalai's remarks on AIADMK leaders

The rift began with Tamil Nadu BJP leader Annamalai's comments on former chief minister J Jayalalithaa, and Annadurai. 

Comments on Jayalalithaa: 

During an interview K Annamalai said had previously said, “many administrations of Tamil Nadu were corrupt with former chief ministers convicted in courts of law." The former BJP allies in Tamil Nadu, and their saffron party's Dravidian connect for a bastion in the south had passed a condemnation resolution against Annamalai for his remark. 

Comments on Annadurai:

Further on September 11, leading a demonstration against Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Minister P K Sekar Babu for his participation in the 'Sanatana Dharma' eradication conference here, Annamalai had made a comment on Annadurai.

Speaking to reporters in Coimbatore on Sunday, Annamalai asked if what he had said about Anna was wrong. He asserted that he is in politics to protect Sanatan Dharma and Tamil culture.

He insisted that he did not speak ill of Anna and had only mentioned an event from the pages of history and the manner in which Muthuramalinga Thevar had defended Sanatana Dharma.

To substantiate his claim, the BJP leader said, he had copies of news reports that appeared in the month of June in 1956 in a top national English daily.

The BJP leader said Anna had in the 1950s made a critical remark in Madurai against the Hindu faith at an event, and that it was staunchly opposed by freedom fighter Pasumpon Muthuramalinga Thevar.

BJP's ambition of Tamil Nadu seats

While BJP leader Annamalai's remarks gave birth to seething tension between AIADMK and BJP, adding to an already strained relationship, Union Home Minister Amit Shah had told BJP workers in Tamil Nadu to target over 25 seats in the next general elections.

Why did AIADMK cut ties with BJP? 

Senior AIADMK leader D Jayakumar, lashing out at Annamalai for his criticism of Annadurai, said his party workers will not tolerate any insult to the late CM.

While Annamalai had made critical remarks about AIADMK leaders including the late J Jayalalithaa in the past, the party had sought that the former be restrained.

"Annamalai doesn't desire an alliance with AIADMK although BJP workers want it. Should we tolerate all this criticism of our leaders? Why should we carry you? BJP can't set foot here. Your votebank is known. You are known because of us," the former minister told reporters here while lashing out at the BJP and its state unit president.

"We can't tolerate anymore (the criticism of leaders). As far as the alliance is concerned, it is not there. BJP is not with AIADMK. (the matter) can be decided only during the election. This is our stand," he said.

"Our party has his (Annadurai) name. To promote himself, he belittles Periyar. He didn't budge even after condemnation. It is against coalition dharma; no AIADMK worker will accept this. Annamalai is unfit to be a leader and he is keen only about promoting him. What right have you got to talk about Periyar, EPS (Palaniswami), Amma (Jayalalithaa) and MGR. AIADMK workers will never accept this," Jayakumar added.

The AIADMK had nothing to lose over the alliance-related development. "They are the losers," he said about the BJP. He repeatedly claimed the BJP and Annamalai will fare badly electorally without the AIADMK.

Will this affect the 2024 Lok Sabha Elections? 

Trouble in paradise arises, when the saffron party, perprtartors and practitioners of Sanatan Dharma tries their luck in the Dravidian state. The issue of an alleged ‘Hindi Imposition’ also lessens chances of BJP establishing control in Tamil nadu. Loosing their Dravidian alliance with loosely thoguht comments can potentially prove fatal for the saffron party in the southern state. 

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sayantani
Sayantani is a Chief Content Producer with Livemint. Her interests are politics, war, and conflict. Off-duty, she explores cultural history and the 'Pedagogy of the Oppressed'
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Published: 18 Sep 2023, 06:45 PM IST
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