Tamil Nadu poll: PWF could be an effective alternative to corrupt Dravidian regimes!
-Dr. Abdul Ruff
There is an impression in public that the Vaiko led PWF alliance in Tamil Nadu has enough potential to fight corruption and liquor but it is too early to pass judgment about the possible poll outcomes straight away. .The PWF is sure to make its presence felt in the state politics in the days to come and it is also eager to find like-minded partners to cleanse politics and even the system of Tamil State.
That the DMK is not going to win the poll is clear when DMK leader Stalin said that it is a competition between top Dravidian parties DMK and AIADMK and hence other parties are not important in the poll. Though Stalin and his father and former CM Karunanidhi have not yet openly admitted the chances for the ruling AIADMK to retain power, apparently they do feel so. All corruption charges and “underdevelopment” plans of CM Jayalalithaa leveled by DMK would not work with Tamil populations that know the basic truth that it was DMK government that promoted corruption as state policy fixing tags for each job and service for Tamils, others in the state.
It appears, there is no cause for the people to reject the ruling AIADMK party because Stalin criticizes incumbent CM Jayalalithaa. No one in Tamil Nadu believes the DMK, in case comes to power by chance, to change its corrupt policy and family interests. On the contrary, DMK leaders and others would feel free to loot the remaining resources of Tamil Nadu, Karunanidhi swindling bulks of them for his own family. In fact, Tamils do not trust the DMK and would prefer AIADMK, founded by first ever actor turned CM M.G.R, unless they find some truly sincere leader and party to vote to power.
It is here that the new PWF is seen by people as their only possible. They know Congress as a corrupt party while and BJP as mine-loot corrupt party with poisonous Hindutva agenda. . .
DMDK president Vijayakanth earlier had announced that his party would face the coming assembly elections on its own. However, prompted by his wife Premalatha’s statement that parties which accepted Vijayakanth’s chairmanship could hold talks with DMDK’s 7-member committee, representatives of the PWF recently met the committee for initiating alliance talks.
Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) general secretary Vaiko expressed hope on Tuesday that actor Vijayakant’s Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) would join the People’s Welfare Front (PWF). Reacting to reports that were doing the rounds in media that Mr. Vijayakant would join the PWF and his wife Premalatha had already held talks with its leaders, Mr. Vaiko, who is also the convener of the front, would only say, “I am hopeful that the DMDK will join hands with us.” Thol. Thirumavalavan, leader of the Viduthalai Chiruthaikal Katchi (VCK), another constituent of the PWF, said talks were going on with the DMDK and efforts were being made to rope in Mr Vijayakant into the fron
DMK and BJP are competing to corner the vote bank of Vijayakanth’s DMDK party, while the new PWF alliance thinks Vijayakanth would take the PWF as his natural ally and would not waste his vote bank by supporting all essentially anti-people parties. .
Vijayakanth’s DMDK party was a partner of the ruling AIADMK party and won many seats in the previous poll Vijayakanth himself became the Opposition leader of the TN assembly. Recently DMDK quit AIADMK alliance and decided to fight poll alone. DMK and BJP vied with each other to woo Vijayakanth to win over him to their side for campaign work but he did not let them decide the fate his party. He like, other leaders like Vaiko, Stalin, PMK’s Anbumani also do, began touring the state and addressing them. Like others, Vijayakanth is overwhelmed by mass gatherings.
Tamil Nadu’s CPM state secretary G Ramakrishnan languished that in the last 49 years, no party, including the Left, worked towards building an alternative to the two Dravidian parties, AIADMK and DMK; the time has now come to work for an alternative to the two parties. Admitting that CPI and CPM aligned with DMK and AIADMK alternatively in the past, Ramakrishnan, in an interview to TOI, said both were found to be “equally corrupt” and that the current government was “corrupt from top to bottom….”Not always does vote bank politics win. We have a common minimum programme (CMP) with plans to set up a Lokayuktha and change economic policies which will benefit all sections. Left is not against industrialization but want equitable growth,” he said.
There is general impression in public that the People’s Welfare party (PWF) is committed to people of Tamil Nadu and their concerns and the front’s strategy was to work towards putting in place a coalition government. Ramakrishnan said. “We are aiming at forming a coalition government. In Tamil Nadu, a single party rule has been a bane. In a coalition government there will be checks and balances and we will adhere to the common minimum programme.” On whether the PWF would accept DMDK chief Vijayakanth as its leader if he opts to join the alliance, Ramakrishnan said, “There is no precondition. He liked our basic CMP to start the work with and that is why we invited him. All issues including leadership of the front can be discussed after he joins the front.”
PWP needs to take votes of other parties to be able win the election, including DMK, BJP and AIADMK. The past poll experience of individual parties within PWP shows that the PWF put together had only a 6% vote share in the state. But now fighting the poll together in the poll for the first time in the background of popular discontentment and disinterest in the government of DMK and AIADMK and the party politics of all the three major parties in the state and BJP , PWP constituents are confident of getting more votes and seats. Vaiko expressed confidence that it would put up a tough fight. Today, economy index of the state is falling steeply. At present, small and medium industries were on the verge of collapse. “These are some of our campaign issues and it is all people-centric and we are confident getting bounty of votes for us. We are targeting at least 1 crore new voters,” he said.
Asked if the PWF was ready to project Vijayakanth as the chief ministerial candidate if he joins the front, Vaiko said, “PWF has reached people and proved predictions of falling apart wrong. We have invited him to join hands with our front. As a coordinator of the front, I can say this only.” On G K Vasan-led Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC) joining the front, he said the PWF will wait and watch.
Taking strong exception to the murder of dalit youth Shankar in Udumalpettai, Vaiko said continuous incidences of honour killings has brought disgrace to the Tamils and the state. Such incidents should not continue in the land of rationalist EVR Periyar, he added. Referring to a double-murder of an inter-caste marriage couple in Madathukulam, Vaiko blamed the police for not investigating the case properly. He said all the four leaders of the PWF will participate in a demonstration against honour killings and the state government at Valluvar Kottam in Chennai on March 21.
Vaiko said, “AIADMK and DMK have already dispatched crores of money to distribute it to voters. We will stop cash distribution and inform the election commission.” The People’s Welfare Front (PWF) is still keen on an alliance with the DMDK. On the recent against by AIADMK high command against supporters of ministers O Panneerselvam Nathan Vishwanathan, Vaiko said it was the deviation tactics adopted by the ruling party to cover up its failures.
Vijayakanth was indirectly demanding chief ministership for jointing the PWF coalition though the PWF had not so far received any communication from the DMDK, said Communist Party of India (CPI) Tamil Nadu secretary R Mutharasan, who was in Madurai last week. Asked whether the PWF would accept the DMDK’s condition to accept its leader Vijayakanth as the chief ministerial candidate, Mutharasan said, “If the DMDK comes for talks, the PWF will discuss the matter. We are waiting for their reply.” He said the PWF’s effort to rope in the Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC) headed by G K Vasan was continuing. “We have also invited the TMC to our front. Its leader Vasan, who has commended the leaders of PWF, has said that our demand should be considered,” said Mutharasan and added that the PWF had so far started campaigning in 21 districts.
It will soon sit together and hold talks on seat sharing, he said. Mutharasan condemned the attack on an inter-caste couple in Udumalpet and the incident in which a farmer was thrashed by policemen in Tanjore. “Honour killings are on the rise in the state. But the ruling AIADMK government does not consider the issue seriously and is remaining a mute spectator. The government should look into the issue seriously. Otherwise it will lead communal tension in the state.”
The PWF is very sympathetic to cause of Lankan Tamils. Criticising chief minister Jayalalithaa’s letter to the Prime Minister, he said, “Whenever Indian fishermen were attacked and their boats seized by the Sri Lankan navy, the chief minister writes letters to the Prime Minister. It is not known whether the CM’s letters are read by the PM or not,” he said. Criticising the police, the CPI secretary said, “The Kingfisher airline’s Vijay Mallya, who did not repay a massive loan to nationalized banks, was able to escape from the country without any hindrances. In fact the Modi government aided his safe exit. But the farmer G Balan in Thanjavur was attacked by the police for not repaying a loan of Rs. 1.34 lakh and another farmer Alagar in Ariyalur committed suicide as he was unable withstand harassment from moneylenders. The government should take action against the police who attacked Balan. The suicide case has to be converted as murder case and the people concerned should be booked.”
Tamil Nadu is ridden with corruption, promoted by DMK and AIADMK and Congress and BJP are not going to fight corruption any way. Leaders have massed huge wealth and their illegal and disproportionate assets are hidden from public view, even the media do not have full details. DMK has groomed family dynasty with every member of Karunanidhi family has increased their wealth and influence. On the decision not to align with either of the Dravidian parties and join the MDMK, VCK, CPI-inclusive People Welfare Front for the assembly election, Ramakrishnan said in Tamil Nadu, politics was being used to amass wealth. “The state has a chief minister who is facing an assets case. On the DMK side, some family members are facing such charges,” he said.
Keeping alliance doors open for DMDK, MDMK chief and People’s Welfare Front (PWF) coordinator Vaiko said the ball is in Vijayakanth’s court to decide on joining the front. Vaiko spoke to reporters on the sidelines of a meeting in the city, where secretaries from nine districts donated money for the party.
The entire legal wing of the People Welfare Front will be overlooking the assembly elections to check whether money is being distributed by parties to their respective cadres. In a meeting held by the legal wing of MDMK, it was decided that a state level conference for advocates belonging to the four parties will be held on March 26 here in Trichy. All the four leaders of PWF will be descending to the city as part of the conference.
The legal fraternity of PWF will hold a consultative meeting in the city on Saturday next week. S Veerapandiyan, legal wing secretary, said that all the leaders of PWF will attend the meeting and expects attendance from over 1,000 advocates affiliated to various parties. According to the secretary, the meeting will take place amidst the presence of Vaiko of MDMK, G Ramakrishnan of CPI (M), Thol Thirumalvalavan of VCK and R Mutharasan of CPI. D Pandian, National Administrative Council member, will inaugurate the meeting.
Issues such as corruption that are plaguing the state will all be addressed at the conference. Education policies and caste based violence will top the agenda at the conference.
Vaiko and other leaders of the PWF are confident of winning the hearts and votes of Tamils in the forth coming as electorates are disappointed with the rulers of last several terms. They are sure of providing an effective and highly responsive government that would genuinely care for the concerns of peole, cleanse the system, get rid of corruption and remove its roots once for all, end liquor supply to people.
However, it appears they want some more important parties other than DMK, AIADMK, Congress and BJP to get a strong mandate from people of Tamil Nadu to government the state to honor the poll promises to make the life of peole much better. Hence they are pursuing alliance with leaders like Vijayakanth. Not just Vijayakanth more of them, like G K Vasan-led Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC).
Delhi’s AAP of Arvind Kejriwal would certainly be an inspiration for the PWF at principle level but Vaiko should know AAP is now the party of Delhiites not just of Kejriwal. People of Delhi state have full faith in Kejriwal who rendered selfless service to the people even much before he launched AAP to face elections. Delhiites ignored even Anna Harare’s opposition to AAP. In order to prefer PWF as the ruling party, Tamils should have full faith in the leaders of PWF, including Vaiko who is now in a better position to gauge the mood of Tamils and to ascertain if the crowd that throngs his meetings would eventually vote for PWF. And there is a state wide awareness about the need to choose the PWF.
To make the peole to remove the economically plus politically powerful ruling AIADMK from power, people should have a credible alternative with enough vote banks. PMK and Vijayakanth wanting to gone it alone could only help the AIADMK win easily and the new hope of Tamils in the name of PWF could not be materialized. The result would be disappointments for all concerned.
It is better to diagnose the malice now and avoid problems rather than cure it after the poll.
Putting behind all speculations about his political moves, the Tamil actor-turned-politician’s DMDK and the People’s Welfare Front join hands to contest Tamil Nadu Assembly polls. In a major development in Tamil Nadu, the Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) on 23 March formally entered into an electoral alliance with the Vaiko led People’s Welfare Front (PWF), constituting two Left parties, the MDMK and the VCK. An official statement said the DMDK would contest 124 seats and the rest will go to the other parties. DMDK president Vijayakanth will be projected as the chief ministerial candidate of the front.
Having waited for too long for Vijaykanth’s arrival, both DMK and BJP are now terribly disappointed. They have lost a star campaigner for votes. In fact, the BJP pinned a lot of hopes on his supporting the Hindutva agenda in the state so that it could garner more seats. But that is not to be……
Needless to state the combination of PWF and DMDK has enough strength to face the poll against all political parties, though how far this anticorruption alliance could outmaneuver the powerful ruling AAIADMK which is now free form anti-incumbency remains ot be seen as the poll campaign progresses. .
Tamil Nadu and Tamils should benefit form the new politics.