Chennai: Tamil Nadu BJP in its quest to widen its acceptance, inducted former India leg-spinner and cricket commentator Laxman Sivaramakrishnan on Wednesday in Chennai in the presence of national secretary and Tamil Nadu in-charge C. T. Ravi.
This comes ahead of the 2021 assembly elections in Tamil Nadu where the BJP is trying to make a mark and is on a recruiting spree.
BJP national secretary and Tamil Nadu in-charge C. T. Ravi told IANS that it is wrong to state that the BJP was in search of people to bring it into its fold but more and more people are getting attracted to its policies and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“We don’t even have a single board or corporation to offer anyone who is joining us in Tamil Nadu at present. Many are joining our party after getting attracted to the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s fearless policies. Be it economic or defence, he has ushered a new era,” he claimed.
He added that the BJP does not have to go to anyone’s doorstep to bring them into the party fold. “Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seen as an ultimate leader not only by the BJP but also by the people of India. They have accepted his policies without suspecting him. That is the charisma he commands,” he said.
Ravi further said that the Tamil Nadu BJP is in touch with leaders from various background industrialists, academicians and intellectuals. “We are in the process of building our base, we will do it,” he said.
Sivaramakrishnan’s political foray comes as a surprise. Popularly known as Siva, he was first noticed during his Ranji trophy debut against Delhi and was picked as part of the Indian team that went to Pakistan in 1982-83. He made his Test debut at the age of 17 against the West Indies.
After his retirement, he turned commentator. He is a player’s representative of the ICC’s cricket committee.
Earlier in the day, actor-turned BJP politician Khushboo Sundar, who quit Congress in October, tweeted that two of her ‘good friends’ were joining the party. Tamil actor P A Subramaniam and functionaries from the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and Communist Party of India (Marxisit) (CPM) joined the BJP on Wednesday.
The BJP is presently in alliance with the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) government in Tamil Nadu. Ravi said he hoped Tamil superstar Rajinikanth, who has decided not to enter politics, would support the NDA alliance.
Meanwhile BJP’s Tamil Nadu unit chief L. Murugan, who was also present at the press meet, said the party had not been ‘officially’ engaged in any talk with expelled DMK leader M. K. Alagiri on him, possibly joining the national party.
Alagiri, son of late DMK patriarch M. Karunanidhi, had said days ago that he would decide on his future course of action following consultations with his supporters on January 3.
“If he (Alagiri) joins, we will welcome him,” Murugan said, adding all, including Arjunamurthy who quit the BJP to join hands with Rajinikanth, were welcome to be a member of the party.
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