Nanguneri bypoll: Dalit allies may not back AIADMK

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Tirunelveli: The ruling party that is still unsure of BJP's full support in the Nanguneri by-election has also lost the confidence of two more of its allies-the Tamilaga Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam and the Puthiya Tamilagam that represents the 17 per cent of the Devendrakula Vellalar community in Nanguneri constituency.
This is thanks to the reluctance of the Tamil Nadu government to officially declare the seven sub-castes--Pallar, Kudumbar, Pannadi, Kaladi, Vathiriyar, Devendrakulathar and Kadayar by the common name of Devendrakula Vellalar. This has been a long pending demand of Dalits in the southern districts.As Puthiya Tamilagam party leader Dr Krishnasamy remained silent over declaring his party support to the AIADMK candidate in the Nanguneri by-election on the Devendrakula Vellalar issue, founder president of the Tamilaga Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam made his stand against the AIADMK open in front of seven state ministers led by state electricity minister P Thangamani on Friday, when they along with several AIADMK functionaries visited John Pandian's residence seeking his party support for AIADMK candidate V Narayanan in Nanguneri.
Stating that he had extended his support to the AIADMK in the Lok Sabha election and in the by-election for the 22 constituencies four months ago on the assurance of the chief minister that government would club all seven sub-castes and officially declare them as Devendrakula Vellalar, the president of the Tamilaga Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam party added that as state government had taken no step to fulfill its promise, he had no option but to retract his support to the ruling party. John Pandian also complained that the chief minister could not be contacted by him to discuss the issue. Since Johan Pandian has sizeable Dalits support in Nanguneri, it may weaken AIADMK's prospects.