AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi on Monday struck a deal with VK Sasikala’s nephew and leader of the Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK) TTV Dhinakaran for the upcoming assembly election in Tamil Nadu. The Hyderabad MP-led All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM) will contest from three seats in the state — Vaniyambadi, Sankarapuram, and Krishnagiri. Dhinakaran announced the tie-up on Twitter.
The culmination of Owaisi’s search for electoral partners had originally begun with the possibility of a deal with MK Stalin-headed Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK). It was widely rumoured that the DMK was looking to leverage Owaisi for the Chepauk constituency, the seat that Stalin’s son Udhayanidhi was slated to contest from. Later, Owaisi was also said to be in talks with Kamal Haasan’s MNM (Makkal Needhi Maiam).
Finally, the deal with Dhinakaran pitches Owaisi against Stalin. The BJP had earlier attempted to close the gap between the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) and Dhinkaran’s outfit but that did not bear fruit. Owaisi’s entry into Tamil Nadu politics on the wagon of the expelled AIADMK leader is set to trigger a race for anti-BJP votes. The DMK had so far been seeking to harvest for itself all the anti-BJP sentiment in the state.
Dhinakaran himself will contest from two seats. With Sasikala declaring her exit from politics, it remains to be seen how much support Dhinakaran manages to draw in the forthcoming elections, having failed to do so on earlier occasions.