The AIADMK and the BJP on Tuesday reached an agreement for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, with five seats being allotted to the national party.
The pact was concluded at a hotel in Chennai during a meeting between BJP's election in charge for Tamil Nadu Piyush Goyal and other senior leaders of the party with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami, Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam and other AIADMK leaders.
At a press conference held at the hotel, Mr. Panneerselvam read out a statement. “The AIADMK and the BJP have formed a mega alliance, a winning alliance to fight the Lok Sabha polls in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. As per the agreement reached today, the BJP has been allotted five seats. The BJP has agreed to support the AIADMK candidates in bypolls to 21 Assembly constituencies in the State,” he said.
Mr. Goyal said he was extremely delighted that the alliance had been finalised between the two parties. “We have concluded very fruitful discussions. We have agreed to contest the elections in the State under the leadership of Chief Minister Palaniswamiji and Deputy Chief Minister Panneerselvamji and at the national level under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.”
Exuding confidence that the 'mega' alliance would be able to garner all the Lok Sabha seats in the State, he said: “Naarpathum Namathey [all the 40 will be ours]” referring to the number of Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.
Mr. Goyal also invoked former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa in his speech. “We are starting our campaign in Tamil Nadu with full confidence that we will sweep the State of Tamil Nadu as a mark of respect to Jayalalithaaji. She was a leader of the people of Tamil Nadu,” he said.
Mr. Goyal recalled his last meeting with the late leader in 2016 on power sector reforms. “Those memories come alive when I see the discussions I have had with the good friends and leaders of the AIADMK,” he said.
“We will fight together so that Amma will be happy and we will continue the legacy and good work honourable Amma did for Tamil Nadu,” he stated.
When asked if he will be meeting DMDK president Vijaykant, he said, “All in due course. I will be meeting.”