Senior AIADMK leader dismisses demand for share in power

Munusamy rebuts criticism against Dravidian movement at campaign launch

The ruling AIADMK’s deputy coordinator, K.P. Munusamy, on Sunday hogged the limelight at the launch of the party’s campaign for the Assembly election.

Known for being blunt while articulating his position, Mr. Munusamy rebutted criticism levelled against the Dravidian movement for being a “non-performer”, and rejected the demand for share in power.

Pointing out that there were “several persons who were doing calculations” to gain a foothold in the State, making use of the absence of leaders of the stature of M.G. Ramachandran, Jayalalithaa and M. Karunanidhi, he stated that “some blacklegs, some national parties, some opportunists, a community and a group, determined to finish off the Dravidian movement and its leaders from the days of Periyar [Dravida Kazhagam founder E.V. Ramasamy] were carrying out a campaign, saying that Tamil Nadu had been destroyed during the 50-year rule of the Dravidian movement.”

Mr. Munusamy, former Local Administration Minister and now an MP (Rajya Sabha), said the State’s progress in different fields such as higher education, agriculture and health was “all possible” only due to Dravidian rule.

At the same time, he contended that the “owners” of the movement were former Chief Ministers C.N. Annadurai, M.G. Ramachandran and Jayalalithaa, and not Karunanidhi. Under the present circumstances, the “ownership” of the movement belonged to Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami, Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam and other members of the party, he said.

As for the idea of sharing power, the ruling party’s senior functionary emphasised that it would be an AIADMK-led government that would be formed in the event of success in the Assembly poll.

“There is no meaning or need for a coalition government. Be it national parties or regional parties, if any of them wants to forge an alliance with us for establishing a coalition government, they have to keep this aspect in mind,” he said.

R. Vaithilingam, another deputy coordinator, underscored the importance of unity among members of the party.

D. Jayakumar, Fisheries Minister and district secretary of the north Chennai (southeast) unit of the AIADMK, said since 1977, his party had gained victory in 10 Assembly elections and it would continue with its winning streak this time too.

E. Madhusudanan, chairman of the party presidium, and P. Thangamani, Electricity Minister and secretary of the Namakkal district unit of the party, were among those who addressed the function.

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