Just as an internal speculation over the AIADMK’s chief ministerial candidate seemed to have emerged from no apparent trigger, ministers from the ruling party in Tamil Nadu have now come up with up with another out-of-the-blue demand -- Madurai should be made the state’s second capital.
A day after the Madurai West wing of the AIADMK urged Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and his deputy O Panneerselvam to put the spotlight on the southern city, two prominent ministers have backed the demand.
What is common between the ministers? They hail from Madurai, and they have been elected to the Assembly from the Madurai region.
Information Technology and Disaster Management Minister RB Udayakumar, who presided over a meeting on Sunday, said Madurai should become the state’s second capital as it will provide more development opportunities in the southern part of Tamil Nadu.
“This will pave the way for opportunities for economic growth, industrial development and employment development. If Madurai is declared as the second capital, southern districts will grow,” Udayakumar said.
Cooperation Minister Sellur Raja too backed Udayakumar’s request. Addressing the media in Madurai district, Raju said, “Our leader MG Ramachandran had wished to make Madurai as the second capital of Tamil Nadu. As someone who hails from Madurai, I would want Madurai to be declared as the second capital.”
Meanwhile, leaders from the opposition DMK have said the statements from the two ministers are mere political stunts, while experts are wondering whether the demand is a message to the AIADMK top leadership for more attention to the Madurai cadre.
According to a tweet by political analyst Sumanth C Raman, “the two Capital thinking is pointless. Madurai or any other city is not going to magically develop if it became a second capital. For investment to come, it needs infrastructure, skilled workforce, access to courts and good standards of living…”