Doubt if cabinet ministers listen to PM Modi: DMK’s Karunanidhi

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Nov 04, 2015 23:01 IST
File photo of DMK chief M Karunanidhi addressing a press conference in Chennai. (PTI Photo)

DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi has said Prime Minister Narendra Modi does not have control over his ministers, in an indication that his party is not looking to tie up with the BJP for the Tamil Nadu assembly elections, a report said on Tuesday.

“After Prime Minister Modi assumed charge, he has travelled a lot, spoken a lot. But I have my doubts if those in Modi’s Cabinet and those in the BJP are listening to him. Their activities show it,” Karunanidhi said in an interview to The Economic Times.

The former Tamil Nadu chief minister also suggested in the interview that PM Modi was more talk than action.

“More than fulfilling what the BJP had promised the people of the country before the 2014 elections, they are doing things that were unsaid, meaning unnecessary things,” Karunanidhi said.

The apparent reference was to the statements of BJP ministers and leaders on the murder of rationalists and on the lynching of a man in Dadri over rumours that he had eaten beef.

In the 2011 assembly elections, the DMK contested in an alliance with the Congress and won 119 seats in the 234-member assembly. Later, the two split ways over the 2G case, and the DMK drew a blank in the last Lok Sabha polls.

The party was recently seen as trying to cozy up to the BJP, but Karunanidhi’s interview -- he rarely gives one-- is a pointer that it has not come off.

The BJP has been insisting that it will not tie up with either the DMK or J Jayalalithaa’s AIADMK in the assembly elections in 2016, though Modi shares an excellent rapport with the chief minister.

Asked about it, Karunanidhi said, “The BJP talks about transparency and does things tactfully behind the curtains. The AIADMK is full of mysteries.”

Rejecting suggestions that the BJP was posing a threat to regional parties, he said its “fundamentalist ideologies will not affect the DMK or Tamil Nadu”.

The interview also saw some warm vibes towards his former ally, with Karunandi saying the Congress was projecting Rahul Gandhi as its leader because they know he “has the necessary knowledge”.

He also put the onus on the ruling BJP for the smooth functioning of Parliament, saying that the Congress -- in opposition -- was “only reacting to the vindictive mindset of the BJP government”.

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