In Krishnagiri, Vidhya Rani seeks votes in the name of forest brigand, militant leader

Forest brigand Veerappan’s daughter, Naam Tamil Katchi candidate in Krishnagiri, is banking on the soft corner forest dwellers in Krishnagiri have for him and the LTTE icon Velupillai Prabhakaran.
Collage of Vidhya Rani, Seeman, and Veerappan
Collage of Vidhya Rani, Seeman, and Veerappan
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From being a youth leader in a party that espouses majoritarian nationalism, and adoring Narendra Modi as a father figure, to a debutant candidate in a regional outfit that breathes fire over Tamil nationalism, Vidhya Rani, daughter of forest brigand Veerappan, has travelled a lot of political distance in four years. 

In Krishnagiri, literally the land of black granite hillocks, that shares borders with Karnataka in the west and Andhra Pradesh in the north, Vidhya Rani no more has Modi as her trump card but there are two other patriarchal figures, eulogised and dreaded in equal measure, that would probably bring her some votes.

One of them is the Robinhood-like image of her own father, killed in an encounter by a special task force two decades ago. The other is Velupillai Prabhakaran, the icon of Naam Tamilar Katchi (NTK), a party led by Seeman, which is known to revere the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Tamil nation is a concept that was close to the heart of Prabhakaran and her own father, said Vidhya who refers to Seeman as ‘uncle’.

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