Anxious for the party's image that took a big hit from the 2G spectrum scam, DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi's elder son MK Alagiri has demanded the ouster of former telecom minister A Raja and his half sister Kanimozhi.
Alagiri is said to have threatened to quit as the DMK's organisational secretary for the southern region if his demand was not met. Sources in the party said he wanted a significant portfolio befitting his stature at the headquarters.
The union chemicals and fertilisers minister has reportedly made these demands in a letter to Karunanidhi, which he is supposed to have handed over on January 1.
A party spokesperson, however, denied the existence of such a letter or that it had come up for discussion.
The stand of Alagiri is, however, diametrically opposite to the 'Save Raja' campaign unleashed by the DMK obviously with Karunanidhi's blessings during the last week of December.
Citing the CBI raids as an image dampener, Alagiri said it would be difficult for the party to win from southern Tamil Nadu, his stronghold, in the coming assembly elections in May.
Alagiri also wanted the state government to distance itself from Tamil Maiyyam, an NGO in which Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi is a director, since the CBI had raided its offices in the wake of the scam.
Sources in the DMK said Alagiri was also miffed with state welfare minister Poongothai Aladi Aruna and wanted action against her for describing him as a cold-blooded politician in her conversations with corporate lobbyist Niira Radia.
This development has come as yet another headache for the party leadership that is discussing preparations for the assembly poll presence of party supremo and chief minister Karunanidhi.
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