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HindustanTimes Wed,17 Sep 2014

RS seat for daughter is Karuna’s next big worry

Shekhar Iyer, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, March 23, 2013
First Published: 01:49 IST(23/3/2013) | Last Updated: 01:53 IST(23/3/2013)

The DMK’s parting of ways from the central government will add to the party chief M Karunanidhi’s worries of getting his daughter Kanimozhi re-elected as Rajya Sabha MP.

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Her first term — along with five other MPs from Tamil Nadu — as a member of the Upper House ends on July 24. The election process is due to start by the end of May.

But with just 23 MLAs in the state assembly, the DMK has little hope to get her elected as she needs support from at least 34 MLAs to win. The Congress, which has 5 MLAs, will be in no mood to back Karunanidhi’s nominee after the break-up of their alliance.

Alternatively, the DMK may be forced to turn to actor Vijaykant, who heads the DMDK, which has 29 MLAs. Vijaykant is currently the leader of the opposition in the state assembly.

The buzz in the DMK is that MK Stalin may urge Karunanidhi to open talks with Vijaykant for a new alliance ahead of Lok Sabha polls to challenge Jayalalithaa.

The support from DMDK can help Kanimozhi return to the Rajya Sabha.

It is not clear, however, whether Vijaykant will be tempted to grab Karunanidhi’s hands though he is strongly opposed to Jayalalithaa. The AIADMK and DMDK had contested the state polls together but fell apart.

But Vijaykant is also under pressure to either nominate his wife Premalatha or brother-in-law LK Sudheesh.

At the same time, given the dissension in his camp, he cannot be sure of the support of all his MLAs to elect a candidate of his choice. Last year, Jayalalithaa lured five of DMDK, after Vijaykant’s MLAs rebelled against him, and they were provided seats along with the treasury benches in the assembly.

Vijaykant has not made any public admission of defection of his MLAs as that would lead to their disqualification from the assembly.


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