Senior leaders of the ruling AIADMK on Saturday called for unity, loyalty and single-minded action on the part of workers of the party to ensure its success in the Assembly poll.
Addressing members and special invitees of the general council at a marriage hall near here, the leaders called upon them to highlight negative features concerning the party’s principal rival, DMK in public fora and strive for victory in the election. They also said that if the DMK got defeated this time, it would not be able to bounce back.
Chief Minister and the co-coordinator Edappadi K.Palaniswami emphasised the need to pay attention to booth-level work and said that if the party could enlist 300 votes per booth, this would get translated into 90,000 votes in an Assembly constituency. Referring to the narrow margin of 12,000 votes with which the NDA retained power in Bihar, Mr. Palaniswami said this had showed how crucial it was to get every single vote. As voters of Tamil Nadu were known for conscience, it would not be easy to secure votes of the people. The co-coordinator said he expected the Election Commission to hold the election in April or May. He thanked the coordinator and Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam for having proposed his name for the CM post.
Mr. Panneerselvam lashed out at the DMK and termed it as “worse than the novel coronavirus”. Driving home the point that the AIADMK had always promoted workers from the ranks to high positions, he said that the party did not have “persons who would create groups.”
Praising the Mr. Palaniswami government for “being able to maintain the goodwill” of the people, he said that no other incumbent regime than that of Mr. Palaniswami had experienced such a favourable climate, facing an election. “The main reason is that we have been adhering strictly to the path shown by Puratchi Thalaivar [M G Ramachandran] and Amma [Jayalalithaa].”
Alluding to the expected release of former interim general secretary of the party V.K. Sasikala, from a Bengaluru prison later this month, K. P. Munusamy, deputy coordinator, said this would not cause any change to the party. However, he cautioned his party members not to be swayed by the confusion that certain sections might create. He added that the real battle in the coming election was going to be between the AIADMK and the DMK. “National parties do not matter here. They are all bystanders only, watching the political game in the State with amusement,” Mr.Munusamy added.
Later in the day, all the senior functionaries, including Mr. Palaniswami and Mr. Panneerselvam, held discussions on completing the formation of booth-level committees.