The All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam’s (AIADMK) break up from the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) didn’t come as a shock for a lot of. The Dravidian occasion had repeatedly taken objection to Tamil Nadu BJP president Okay Annamalai’s remarks on its icons, together with CN Annadurai and J Jayalalithaa.
Thus, the onus of the break-up between the AIADMK and the BJP is being placed on Annamalai. However, the BJP’s prime brass doesn’t appear to thoughts and is reportedly “firmly backing” its TN unit chief.
Who is Okay Annamalai and why has he taken centre stage amid the fallout between the 2 events? Let’s take a better look.
Meet Okay Annamalai
Born in Tamil Nadu’s Karur district, 39-year-old Okay Annamalai is a police officer-turned-politician. After learning engineering in Coimbatore, he went on to earn a Master of Business Administration (MBA) diploma from the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Lucknow, reported Hindustan Times (HT).
He was Bengaluru South deputy police commissioner when he stop the Indian Police Service (IPS) in 2019 to enterprise into politics in Tamil Nadu, as per the newspaper report.
Just a 12 months after he joined the BJP in 2020, Annamalai was appointed as Tamil Nadu BJP’s chief.
He contested the 2021 Assembly polls from Aravakurichi in western Tamil Nadu, nevertheless, misplaced to Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) candidate Elango R.
While the DMK trounced AIADMK within the 2021 TN Assembly polls to return to energy, the BJP managed to win solely 4 seats within the 234-member House.
#EnMannEnMakkal பயணம், கோவையில், கோவை வடக்கு மற்றும் கவுண்டம்பாளையம் சட்டமன்றத் தொகுதிகளில் மக்கள் ஆரவாரத்துடன் சிறப்புடன் நடந்தேறியது. தமிழகத்தின் பிற பகுதிகளில் வேர்வையைக் கொடுத்து கட்சியை வளர்த்திருக்கிறார்கள் என்றால், கோவையில், ரத்தத்தைக் கொடுத்து கட்சியை… pic.twitter.com/X4MA1v8xRf
— Okay.Annamalai (@annamalai_k) September 26, 2023
However, as per Indian Express: “While he lost (in the 2021 state polls), Annamalai’s star hasn’t dimmed, thanks to his penchant for staying in the news, which is clever positioning to stand out in a political field dominated by the DMK and AIADMK, with the BJP on the margins.”
As HT famous, Annamalai has adopted “aggressive politics” because the BJP seeks to increase its base in Tamil Nadu, the place the facility has shifted between solely DMK and AIADMK since 1967.
Is the break up with AIADMK a win for Annamalai?
Annamalai has locked horns with the AIADMK by his remarks on the occasion’s alleged corruption and its revered leaders.
During an interview earlier, Okay Annamalai, with out taking AIADMK’s title, had mentioned that “many administrations of Tamil Nadu were corrupt with former chief ministers convicted in courts of law”, as per a report in Mint.
He additionally irked the AIADMK by claiming that Dravidian stalwart CN Annadurai apologised to Forward Bloc chief late U Muthuramalinga Thevar for allegedly insulting Hinduism. The declare was dismissed by the Dravidian occasion.
Last week, AIADMK leaders had known as upon BJP nationwide president JP Nadda in New Delhi to apprise him concerning the “ground reality” and search a “course correction” after Annamalai’s “insulting” remarks, reported Times of India (TOI).
On Monday (25 September), the AIADMK formally known as off its ties to the BJP.
Announcing its separation from the NDA simply months earlier than the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, the AIADMK, as per ANI, talked about, “The state leadership of the BJP has been continuously making unnecessary remarks about our former leaders, our general secretary Edappadi K Palaniswami and our cadres for the past one year”.
After AIADMK’s announcement, the TN BJP chief selected to not make a direct remark, saying “Delhi leaders” will reply, as per ANI.
According to PTI, addressing BJP employees throughout his ‘En Mann, En Makkal’ (My land, My individuals) padayatra at Pollachi on Monday evening, Annamalai mentioned, “If I don’t do certain things, then I will lose the trust you have placed in me…we need to face challenges, overcome hurdles, take a stance to oppose some individuals”.
According to a report in Deccan Herald (DH), Annamalai advised his occasion leaders at a closed-door assembly in March this 12 months that he would stop as TN BJP chief if the central management continued its alliance with the AIADMK for the 2024 common elections.
He advised the BJP Central management to struggle the upcoming elections in TN solo if it needed individuals to take its stand on corruption, nepotism, and good governance “seriously”, the report added.
“At a time when every party is trying to widen its network of allies at least to show some numbers, the AIADMK has walked out of an alliance with the BJP. This will give Annamalai enough room to hit out at the AIADMK on corruption and add credence to the BJP’s ‘Clean Up TN’ formula,” senior journalist R Bhagwan Singh advised DH.
Divisions inside BJP over Annamalai
The TN BJP reportedly has combined views about Annamalai’s aggressive fashion of politics.
While some have lauded his management, others have identified his “inexperience” and alleged “ignorance” of problems with the southern state, as per Indian Express.
Speaking to HT on the situation of anonymity, a BJP chief acknowledged that Annamalai has introduced the saffron occasion to the “mainstream” in Tamil Nadu with his virtually each day press conferences and making certain the occasion’s presence within the media.
After the AIADMK break up, BJP chief CT Ravi advised ANI, “Eight months are left and what will happen in these months, we can’t say anything today. To make the party strong is the duty of every worker. Under the leadership of K Annamalai, great work of strengthening the party is being done.”
#WATCH | On AIADMK ending the alliance with BJP and NDA, BJP Leader CT Ravi says, “Eight months are left and what’s going to occur in these months, we are able to’t say something in the present day. To make the occasion robust is the obligation of each employee. Under the management of Okay Annamalai an excellent work of… pic.twitter.com/tHmRxhOTGd
— ANI (@ANI) September 25, 2023
But not everyone seems to be blissful with the TN BJP chief.
“He has sidelined a lot of veterans and workers who were groomed in and have been working for the party,” a BJP chief advised HT.
Some have additionally blamed Annamalai for the exit of a number of leaders from the BJP not too long ago, most of whom went on to hitch the AIADMK.
As Indian Express famous, “How things turn out from here might be uncertain, but in either case, for the BJP – and by extension, for Annamalai – it is a defining moment.”
With inputs from businesses