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Annamalai wishes to take 3-month break from politics for fellowship in UK

However, it is not yet clear if the BJP has accepted Annamalai’s application for leave.
Last Updated : 01 July 2024, 17:15 IST

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Chennai: Tamil Nadu BJP chief K Annamalai has decided to take a three-month break from active politics to attend a fellowship on leadership in London offered by the United Kingdom’s Foreign Office.

Annamalai’s application for the Chevening Gurukul Fellowship for Leadership and Excellence programme has been accepted and he has “made up his mind” to attend the program, sources in the know told DH.

Beginning mid-September, the three-month long fellowship will go on till December. The former Karnataka-cadre IPS office is believed to have conveyed his intention to pursue the program, which is considered prestigious, to the BJP high command.

“He has sought a three-month break from active politics from the BJP high command. He wants to attend the fellowship and he is very clear about it,” a source in the know told DH.

However, it is not yet clear if the BJP has accepted Annamalai’s application for leave.

If he is on a three-month break, the BJP has to decide whether it will allow him to continue as the state chief by appointing an acting president or find a replacement.

The source added that Annamalai had applied for the fellowship earlier this year and had attended an interview in this regard in Delhi in May.

Annamalai applied for the fellowship as the founder of ‘We The Leaders’ foundation, an NGO he launched in 2019 after he sought voluntary retirement from the Indian Police Service.

Annamalai’s rise in the BJP has been meteoric after his joining the party in August 2020. Within a year, the blue-eyed boy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi was made the state unit chief and was given a free hand in running the party.

His outspoken nature and confrontational attitude made him a polarising figure in Tamil Nadu since he became BJP state unit chief in 2021.

In the largely bipolar state of Tamil Nadu, Annamalai, though mocked for his seemingly taller claims of BJP crossing a 20 per cent vote share in the 2024 polls, brought the party into the spotlight through relentless engagement.

Though the BJP scored over 11 per cent votes in the 2024 elections without an alliance with DMK or AIADMK, Annamalai himself lost from Coimbatore Lok Sabha seat.

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Published 01 July 2024, 17:15 IST

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