The DMK chief was told that meeting KCR would most certainly send out the signal that he has now lost confidence in the Congress president.
Chennai: A day after the DMK indicated that its president M.K. Stalin will meet Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekar Rao here on May 13, the party has now indicated the meeting will not happen. TRS chief has been told that Stalin is busy in campaigning for the May 19 by-elections in the four Assembly constituencies, DMK sources said.
While the DMK is reluctant to provide further details on why the all-important meeting was called off, other sources insisted that Stalin had initially agreed to meet KCR when he was told it would be “just a probing mission” for knowing the DMK chief’s mind on the post-May 23 national political scenario, but he has since chosen to skip the session on learning that KCR is “pretty serious” about forging a Federal Front that would attempt forming a non-Congr-ess/non-BJP Government at the Centre.
Also, it was quite likely that the Congress high command had got in touch with him to remind it was he who had proposed Rahul Gandhi as the Prime Minister of the anti-BJP coalition. The DMK chief was told that meeting KCR would most certainly send out the signal that he has now lost confidence in the Congress president.
Besides, the Congress has been openly accusing KCR and his Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) of being the BJP’s ‘B’ team; so engaging him in any sort of political dialogue would most certainly dilute the bonding that Stalin has developed with the Congress leadership.
For his part, KCR met his Kerala counterpart Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday night and Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy phoned him on knowing about his trips to Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
The Kerala CM said on Tuesday that his meeting with KCR the previous night was “significant”. The two discussed the national political scenario and KCR was strongly of the opinion that both the NDA and the UPA would not get majority, so the regional parties must come together to provide an alternative coalition.
There was no discussion on who would be the PM candidate, he said when pressed for details.
Meanwhile, TRS sources indicated there was still hope the KCR-Stalin meeting would take place. “The DMK is a big party and Stalin has a huge responsibility now on how he leads it in the absence of his father. He had taken a huge risk in proposing Rahul as PM of the Opposition Front and took some hard criticism when his idea did not go well with other senior politicians such as Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav and West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee. He would like to measure his strides carefully now in this critical political phase”, said a source, while pointing out that KCR enjoys “good rapport” with Stalin and was treated to warmly when he visited the DMK chief’s house in April last year for lunch.
“Besides, Stalin will know after the votes are counted on May 23 that we must do something real fast to consolidate the Opposition unity for forming the Government at the Centre as otherwise the BJP might take advantage”, said another source.
From the DMK side, it is being argued that now that the Lok Sabha elections are over (on April 18) in Tamil Nadu, Stalin is rightly focusing his energies, and time, on campaigning for the Assembly by-elections. While by-polls for 18 Assembly seats were held on April 18, four other seats are going to polls on May 19. The DMK chief has been saying repeatedly that his party would win all the 22 seats and thereafter replace the Edappadi Government of the AIADMK in power.
Meanwhile, VCK chief Thol Thirumavalavan has welcomed Stalin’s decision to not meet KCR. He said the Telangana CM’s proposed Federal Front would only help the BJP.
Keep yourself updated on Lok Sabha Elections 2019 with our round-the-clock coverage -- breaking news, updates, analyses etc all. Happy reading.