Tamil Nadu Congress Faces Split, GK Vasan Set to Break Away: Report

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Tamil Nadu Congress Faces Split, GK Vasan Set to Break Away: Report

File Photo: GK Vasan

Chennai, Tamil Nadu:  The already depleted Congress seems headed for a setback with former Union Shipping Minister GK Vasan reportedly giving ample indications of breaking away from the party and reviving the erstwhile Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC).

The reported plans for a split by Mr Vasan, whose father GK Moopanar had floated the TMC in 1996 in Tamil Nadu, emerged even as EVKS Elangovan was appointed as the new Tamil Nadu Congress Committee President with Congress accepting the resignation of BS Gnanadesikan, who was reportedly upset over his "neglect" by the All India Congress Commitee. Mr Vasan had on Friday come out in Gnanadesikan's support.

"I will announce my next plan of action on November 3," Mr Vasan told reporters in Chennai after holding consultations for the second day with his supporters, which included former legislators Vellore Gnanasekaran and Vidiyal Sekar.

Mr Vasan also raised the "Valamana Tamilagam, Valimayana Bharatham," (prosperous Tamil Nadu, vibrant India) slogan coined during the founding of TMC by his father. TMC had merged with the Congress in 2002.

"In Tamil Nadu, the movement (Congress) can be strengthened only by invoking the legacy of Kamaraj and Moopanar," he said in an obvious reference to the tussle with the high command over the issue of membership cards.

He and his supporters like Mr Gnanadesikan had alleged that the Congress high command had not allowed them to use images of Mr Kamaraj and Mr Moopanar in the cards.

The high command has, however, denied this.

Describing the situation arising out of the resignations of his followers Mr Gnanadesikan and treasurer Covai Thangam as "abnormal," Mr Vasan said even after this, the AICC's denial to "allegations" were "unacceptable."

"I express with grief the wrong political approach (done) in the name of very important leaders of the party," he said in a reference to the high command not toeing the line of his group in the party on issues, including membership cards.

The controversy over images of Congress icons Kamaraj and Moopanar on the cards had infuriated party workers, he alleged.

"AICC's deeds in the past several years have been against the mood of the cadres, be it party affairs or on key issues concerning Tamil Nadu people," he said.

"Especially post the Lok Sabha debacle, the AICC had ignored the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee and as a result the party apparatus is in a lull."

In reply to a question, Mr Vasan accused the high command of having an "ulterior motive".

"When Gnanadesikan (Vasan loyalist) wanted to speed up the membership drive, the diktat of the AICC to postpone it had an ulterior motive," he said.

In Delhi, party in-charge for Tamil Nadu,Mukul Wasnik announced that Congress President Sonia Gandhi has appointed Mr Elangovan as the new TNCC chief.

Mr Elangovan had earlier also served as TNCC chief and was a Minister of State in UPA-I.



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