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Amid stalemate in seat-sharing talks with Congress, DMK allots two Lok Sabha seats each to CPI, CPI(M) in Tamil Nadu

The seat-sharing talks with Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK) and MDMK led by Vaiko is continuing and is likely to be concluded in the next few days.
Last Updated 29 February 2024, 07:24 IST

Chennai: Amid a stalemate in seat-sharing talks with the Congress, Tamil Nadu’s ruling Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) on Thursday allotted two seats each to CPI (M), and CPI for the Lok Sabha elections.

The seat-sharing pacts were signed between DMK chief M K Stalin and K Balakrishnan and R Mutharasan, state secretaries of CPI (M) and CPI respectively. 

The DMK, which is the lead partner in the Secular Progressive Alliance, has already allotted Ramanathapuram and Namakkal Lok Sabha seats to the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), and Kongunadu Makkal Desiya Katchi (KDMK) respectively.

The seat-sharing talks with Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK) and MDMK led by Vaiko is continuing and is likely to be concluded in the next few days. 

Congress unhappy with DMK over seat-sharing, questions 7 seat

While the talks with Left parties have been smooth, it is believed that the Congress is upset with the seven-seat offer by the DMK against the party’s demand for a double-digit number.

Even in the worst case scenario, Congress was hoping to get nine in Tamil Nadu and one in neighbouring Puducherry like in 2019 Lok Sabha polls. 

Though the two parties are expected to meet on Saturday for the second round of talks, the Congress seems to be very clear on not accepting anything less than 10 seats, including one in Puducherry, while parties like CPI (M) and CPI have got the same number that they contested in 2019. 

“The party high command is upset that the Congress was offered six seats which has now been increased to seven,” a source in the party told DH, adding that efforts are on to conclude the seat-sharing talks at the earliest. 

Congress leaders are believed to have told the DMK that the party did accept 25 seats in the assembly elections in 2021, 16 seats less than what it got in 2016, only because the Dravidian party insisted that it was a state election, and they should be allowed to contest in maximum seats. 

 “Since this is a national election, we want to contest the same number of seats that we did in 2019. We have conveyed this clearly to the DMK leadership. We hope for an early resolution. We expect some clarity on Saturday,” the source added. 

For the record, Tamil Nadu Congress Committee (TNCC) chief K Selvaperunthagai said the relationship between the DMK and Congress was strong and that there were no issues between the two parties.

“In general, we don’t beg for seats. It is a matter of fact that we contested alone in 2014,” he said. 

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(Published 29 February 2024, 07:24 IST)

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