Stalin's elevation: DMK executive council to meet

Despite opposition from within his family, Karunanidhi had announced Stalin as his political heir and had groomed him for succeeding him as the party president.

The DMK has convened an urgent meeting of its executive council, the top decision-making body, on Tuesday to condole the death of its president M Karunanidhi and fix a date for convening the general council to choose his successor.

The "urgent meeting", which will be held at 10 am on August 14 at the Kalaignar Arangam in party headquarters Anna Arivalayam here, would in all probability pass two resolutions —  paying rich tributes to its first and longest-serving president Karunanidhi recalling his contributions and fixing the date for convening the general council.

The meeting will be held exactly a week after Karunanidhi passed away on August 7.

Though the announcement by party general secretary K Anbhazhagan mentions that the only agenda is to recall contributions of Karunanidhi and pass a resolution, sources said the meeting could see a virtual declaration of Stalin as Karunanidhi's successor in the DMK.

After the resolution on Karunanidhi is passed, senior leaders are expected to make fervent pleas to the top brass to anoint Stalin as the new president of DMK.

Even if the executive committee takes a decision on Stalin's elevation, the general council will have to ratify it, a senior leader said, quoting the DMK party constitution.

Though Stalin as working president wields the power of DMK president, sources said, the party constitution mandates that a successor be elected within one month of the passing away of the chief.

Despite opposition from within his family, Karunanidhi had announced Stalin as his political heir and had groomed him for succeeding him as the party president.

"The executive council has been convened only to condole Thalaivar's (Karunanidhi's) death," Stalin told reporters after meeting Anbhazhagan, who convened the urgent meeting.

The general council, which was scheduled to be held on August 19 and was later re-scheduled due to Karunanidhi's hospitalisation in July, is likely to be held in the first week of September.

After taking over as DMK president, Stalin is likely to have a new team — but Anbhazhagan will continue to be general secretary  — and will shed the treasurer post which he is holding since 2008.

His half-sister Kanimozhi, party propaganda secretary and former Union minister A Raja and a few young faces are likely to be given prominence in the DMK, sources said.

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Stalin's elevation: DMK executive council to meet

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