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Tamil Nadu’s Political Heavyweights Fly Into Delhi Separately To Meet Amit Shah

Three political heavyweights from Tamil Nadu — chief minister M K Stalin, AIADMK chief Edappadi K Palaniswami (EPS) and BJP TN Head K Annamalai – flew into Delhi on April 26, separately, to meet the Union Home Minister Amit Shah. Stalin’s visit was obviously for damage control in the wake of the recent tape leak on social media alleging huge sums of money made by his son and son-in-law, and the simultaneous raids on homes and offices of a leading realty company said to be close to the first family. In the case of EPS, after becoming AIADMK chief, he sought legitimacy to his status from the BJP boss. Even as he walked into Shah’s residence with his coterie –Thangamani, Velumani, Jayakumar — he was jolted by the looming presence of Annamalai, bogeyman antagonist whom he dreads as much as OPS. At a media meet, when asked about Annamalai’s sphere of influence, EPS caustic response was “We only deal with PM, HM and Naddaji.” There is no love lost between Annamalai and EPS but Shah made it clear to EPS that BJP works as a team with a chain of command; it’s not faction-led. In other words, he was asking EPS to bury the hatchet with his arch rival OPS, unify the party and give BJP solid support or else BJP will fight alone under Annamalai’s leadership.