In Tamil Nadu, the DMK and Congress are trading conflicts ahead of the Lok Sabha polls...What's happening?

The close the general elections are becoming, the more the conflicts are rising in the united opposition INDIA (Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance) coalition. From Mamata Banerjee's politics of shunning away the Congress, the lead party in the bloc, in her state of West Bengal to Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party announcing to contest alone in Punjab, a lot of setbacks have been taking place in the coalition ahead of the polls. 

Their conflicts give advantage for the ruling BJP regime and give an uncertain future of already beleaguering parties as this upcoming election is becoming a do-or-die battle. The trend of conflict between the allied parties is now surging sharply in Tamil Nadu. In the INDIA bloc, Tamil Nadu-ruling DMK is a largest party with strong ties with the Congress and though the leaderships of the both the parties rub shoulders and exchange solidarity, the scenes on the ground are ironical. 

Both the DMK and Congress are in the process of finalising the seat sharing for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls. In the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the Congress had contested in nine seats in the DMK alliance and won eight of them and the party has secured one-fifth of the seat from Tamil Nadu. DMK has been facing a challenge of accommodating more parties in the alliance and as the polls near, that challenge has been revived. 

For the upcoming polls, the Congress party has been demanding the DMK to allot more seats than what it was provided five years ago. However, according to our sources, the DMK is assaying to convince the Congress leadership to settle down with seven seats by citing a trend that's going against the Congress. The disputes are growing weeks after the Samajwadi party in Uttar Pradesh, which has 80 Lok Sabha seats, had announced that it would allot only 11 seats to Congress. 

On the already-heated grounds of Tamil Nadu, the DMK functionaries have sparked a wave against the Congress with a demand that the DMK should contest in the seats that it holds already and in the seats that were won by the Congress five years ago. This trading of conflicts has emerged from the Mayiladuthurai Lok Sabha constituency recently where veteran Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar has been taking efforts to contest. 

DMK's Ramalingam is the incumbent MP of Mayiladuthurai and after learning that the Congress is making moves to win the seat, the DMK cadres have held protests that the constituency must be retained by the DMK and that the Congress should be kept in bay. After the protests in Mayiladuthurai had made a splash, a similar trend had reflected in some areas across the state. 

Congress MP Jothimani, who is close to Rahul Gandhi, is the incumbent MP of Karur constituency and now, her prospect of contesting again from Karur has become uncertain with the protests from the DMK cadres that the party should contest from Karur this time. Karur is a notable seat in Tamil Nadu's Kongu-belt (western region of the state) and is the fortress of once-DMK strongman Senthil Balaji, who is now serving incarceration in the wake of the charges from Enforcement Directorate. 

Following Karur, another Congress MP who is witnessing a similar fate is Karti Chidambaram, the MP of Sivaganga constituency. Karti is the son of former Union Minister and party's veteran P Chidambaram and throughout the last five years, he has reaped more dissents from his constituency that even a section of Congress leaders are not ready to endorse his candidacy. 

According to reports, a faction of the Congress party in Sivaganga has made a decision not to nominate Karti Chidambaram as the party's candidate in the general elections. Such a resolution was passed on Sunday in a meeting led by former Union Minister Sudarsana Nachiappan. The development has come amidst a notion that even DMK is not ready to support Karti's run for the second term and the DMK's top leaders are advocating that Sivaganga shouldn't be given to Congress. 

If the Sivaganga seat wasn't awarded to the Congress, the reports say that the DMK leaders like Raja Kannappan and Periya Karuppan are vying to get the Sivaganga ticket for their sons. It has also been reported that more such conflicts may emerge in the coming days even the leaderships of both the parties display their strong ties.