Stern Tests Lie Ahead For DMK As Stalin Takes Over As Party Chief

Stern Tests Lie Ahead For DMK As Stalin Takes Over As Party Chief M K Stalin greets the party men while leaving after completing a ride in the newly inaugurated Chennai metro. (Jaison G/India Today Group/Getty Images) 

M K Stalin today (28 August) took over as the President of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) after all the 1,307 nominations for the post were found to have been filed on his behalf.

Stern tests lie ahead of him with the immediate one being a rally called by his brother and expelled DMK leader M K Alagiri. Besides the rally organised by Alagiri on 5 September to commemorate one month of Karunanidhi’s passing away, the DMK will have to likely face multi-cornered contests in the by-elections to the Thiruparankundram assembly constituency. The vacancy has been caused by the death of All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) member A K Bose.

Over the next 10 months, the DMK will also have to face the elections to the Lok Sabha, which will also define the future of the Dravidian party. In between, a ruling on the disqualification of 18 members of the Tamil Nadu Assembly could also prove to be a significant development. It will test Stalin’s political acumen in mustering his party towards power. The fact that the DMK has been unable to make any headway despite an open split in the AIADMK is held against him.

S Duraimurugan, deputy leader of DMK in the assembly, was elected the treasurer. The announcement of their election was made by the party senior leader K Anbazhagan. No other persons contested or were nominated for both the posts.

Stalin, son of DMK late M Karunanidhi, had been functioning as the party’s working president since January 2017.

Accepting his election, Stalin offered floral tributes to party founders C N Annadurai and Karunanidhi. The party’s general council then passed a resolution demanding that Karunanidhi, who passed away on 7 August, be conferred with the Bharat Ratna. The party has also decided to set up an IT wing.

Leaders cutting across parties congratulated Stalin, starting from Congress President Rahul Gandhi.