Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami attempted to ease tensions amidst minority communities in Tamil Nadu, over the AIADMK's alliance with the BJP on Thursday. Speaking to a gathering of the Muslim community members in Tiruppur district, the Chief Minister wore a skull cap as he addressed his audience.
"Some people perceive this wrongly. An alliance is different and ideology is different. Alliance can change every time. Alliances are created for politics. Every party has an ideology and they will never let it go. Nobody has to fear that they will be affected because of our alliance. We need your support for this rule to continue," he told members of the minority community who were present there.
The AIADMK and BJP have announced at various events and stages that they will be contesting together for the upcoming Assembly elections. This has led to concerns amongst minority groups that have traditionally voted for the AIADMK. Sources in the AIADMK have told TNM in the past that there were fears over the alliance with BJP alienating its minority community voters.
In the past too, EPS has attempted to assure the minority community that their rights will be protected by the AIADMK. In March 2020, in Coimbatore, EPS told a gathering that ‚ÄúNo Muslim born in Tamil Nadu will be affected by the NPR (National Population Register)‚ÄĚ. In January 2021, he had said in Ramanathapuram that minorities need not feel insecure because of the alliance with BJP, the AIADMK is a party that is ‚Äúfriendly with every community‚ÄĚ.
In addition to the BJP, the AIADMK is also expected to ally with both the DMDK and PMK. However the DMDK has publicly criticized the ruling party for failing to initiate any seat sharing discussions and in addition to this, the PMK is currently discussing an increased reservation of 20% for the Vanniyar community. They have met the ruling government multiple times over this demand.
The Chief Minister gave several speeches throughout the day on Thursday, engaging the audience as he spoke. He stressed on how the AIADMK has helped farmers through several schemes including desilting of water bodies and ground water management. He pointed out how rain water harvesting has been an important campaign as far as the AIADMK is concerned.