The DMK will never tie-up with the BJP, its chief MK Stalin declared on Friday, commenting that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was no Atal Bihari Vajpayee and it was an “irony” that he compared himself with the former prime minister, who died in August.
“The DMK will never align with BJP, and PM Modi is not Vajpayee. An alliance under him is not a healthy alliance. It is an irony that PM Modi compares himself with Vajpayee,” MK Stalin said on Friday.
The remarks were in response to PM Modi’s comments on Thursday that the BJP is open to alliances and “cherishes its old friends“, in what was seen as an outreach to Tamil Nadu parties ahead of the national election due by May.
The Prime Minister was interacting with BJP workers from Tamil Nadu when he spoke about the “successful coalition politics” of Vajpayee in the 1990s.
The BJP’s doors are “always open”, he said when asked by a BJP worker if the party would ally with AIADMK, DMK or Rajinikanth.
“Twenty years ago, visionary leader Atalji brought in a new culture in Indian politics, that of successful coalition politics. He gave utmost importance to regional aspirations…BJP has followed the way Atalji has shown us,” he said.
The BJP has been seen to be closer to the state’s ruling AIADMK but with the party considerably weakened and fractured after J Jayalalithaa’s death, the DMK has emerged as a strong option.
After the death of DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi, the BJP supported a memorial for him at Chennai’s Marina Beach, which raised speculation.
The DMK partnered with the BJP earlier in 1999.