HEADLINES:
September 15 2019
Staunch critic turns into ally
20 February 2019

PMK had set 10 conditions for joining the AIADMK-led front

AIADMK co-ordinator and Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam announced on Tuesday that the PMK will be a part of the AIADMK-led alliance in the upcoming Lok Sabha election.

The party will contest in seven Lok Sabha constituencies and get one Rajya Sabha seat, he said.

Despite having been a staunch critic of the AIADMK and the BJP in recent times, the PMK has now decided to ally with them.

Making a formal announcement about the poll pact, Mr. Panneerselvam said, “In the upcoming 2019 Lok Sabha election, the AIADMK and the PMK will contest together in a mega, winning alliance in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. The PMK will contest in seven Lok Sabha constituencies as part of an alliance led by the AIADMK and will also be given one Rajya Sabha seat.”

The announcement follows several days of speculation in the media about which way the PMK will lean. Mr. Panneerselvam said the PMK would extend its support to the AIADMK alliance in the upcoming bypolls to 21 vacant Assembly constituencies.

List of demands

“It is a victorious alliance, a mega alliance. The reason why we decided to ally with the AIADMK will be explained by [party leader] Anbumani Ramadoss. We had set 10 conditions/demands for entering into an alliance with the AIADMK,” said PMK founder S. Ramadoss. He said the details of the constituencies in which the PMK will contest will be disclosed at a later date.

Most of the PMK’s demands for “people’s welfare”, as detailed by Dr. Ramadoss, revolve around issues the party has raised in the past — declaration of the delta region as a protected agricultural zone, implementation of prohibition, conduct of a caste-based census in the State, immediate release of seven Tamils convicted in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, closure of sand mining quarries, restoration of the old pension scheme for State government employees and exemption from NEET for Tamil Nadu, among others.

Just as journalists began asking questions about the PMK’s sharp criticism of the AIADMK government in the past, Dr. Ramadoss decided to wind up the press meet and leave.

 

 

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