DMK backs 'secular party', Chidambaram says he's ready to go alone

Chennai, Mar 10: DMK chief M Karunanidhi today favoured a secular party ruling the country after the Lok Sabha elections. "A secular party should be India's ruling party.

That is the principle of myself and my DMK and you all know that," the 90-year-old leader said. He was responding to reporters' queries on whether he would support Narendra Modi for the country's top post after the elections but he declined to respond to 'individuals.'

Asked about a 'Modi wave sweeping the country,' he remarked 'I am aware of waves in Bay of Bengal only.' The DMK chief, in a recent interview, had described the Gujarat Chief Minister as a 'hardworking' person besides calling him a 'good friend' of his.

Asked about the Third Front, Karunanidhi said his party would always contribute to a 'democratic, secular' front, but did not elaborate in detail. 

Ready to go alone: Chidambaram

Facing the daunting task of going it alone in the Lok Sabha polls in Tamil Nadu where 39 seats are up for grabs, Congress has put up a brave face with Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram saying they would field candidates in all 40 constituencies even if there is no alliance.

"Congress can face elections alone or with allies. Parties like Janata Party, United Janata Dal fell into oblivion, but Congress is not like that. Even if there is no alliance, we will field candidates in all constituencies and seek votes telling people about the party's achievements," he said.

The minister was addressing the party's booth committee workers at Manamadurai in the district yesterday.

Congress' last-minute efforts to stitch an alliance with DMK was reportedly blocked by its senior leader M K Stalin, while actor-politician Vijaykanth-led DMDK, wooed by it, has embraced the BJP combine. AIADMK is contesting all 40 seats, including one in neighbouring Union Territory of Puducherry, on its own.

DMK has firmed up alliance with IUML, MMK, VCK and Puthiya Tamizhagam. Left parties are also left with no allies after their alliance with AIADMK collapsed over sharing of seat.

In the 2009 elections, Congress, a partner in the DMK-led DPA, had contested 16 seats and won nine of them, while the front itself claimed an impressive 28 seats.


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