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How long should Congress plead for seats; time to grow in stature and capture power: TNCC chief

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Chennai, May 16 (PTI) The Congress, which has been out of power in Tamil Nadu for over five decades, is attempting to stage a bid to capture power in the state in the 2026 assembly elections.

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TNCC chief K Selvaperunthagai deplored the present plight of his party in fighting elections in the shadow of the Dravidian majors, and appealed to cadres to strive to capture power in the state.

"The Congress has been dependent on alliance partners in obtaining seats at the time of elections for 57 years from 1967," Selvaperunthagai told party workers at a meeting in Dharmapuri on Wednesday, without naming the DMK or the AIADMK.

"This situation should change. The party should grow to apportion seats to other parties instead of asking for seats. The party workers should work hard to establish late Chief Minister Kamaraj's rule," the TNCC chief on a mission to revive the grand old party's lost glory, said.

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He urged the Congress cadres to gear up for the state assembly election to be held in two years.

"Should we still be silent? We should not delay further. The party infrastructure should be strengthened. How long will we ask for seats? It is time to grow in stature and give seats to allies," he said at the meeting.

Selvaperunthagai further claimed that the Congress had "wasted 57 years" without power in Tamil Nadu.

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The Congress had ruled the state for 20 years from 1947 and was sent packing home in the 1967 elections, which saw the emergence of the DMK signaling the commencement of Dravidian politics in the state.

Since then, the Congress has been fighting electoral battles in the shadows of the DMK or the AIADMK, though the party has been enjoying strong ties with the DMK since 2004.

In 1989, the Congress made a bid to avoid alliances with the Dravidian parties when G K Moopanar was the state party chief but it fell short of the target.

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Later, the party suffered a split when Moopanar launched the Tamil Maanila Congress in 1996. However, he aligned with the DMK under the leadership of its president M Karunanidhi, then.

Following Moopanar's death, his son G K Vasan merged the faction with the Congress in 2002 only to revive it in 2014. Vasan is now an ally of the BJP.

Since it lost power, the Congress has been attempting to revive the golden rule of Kamaraj but this has been elusive till now. PTI JSP ANE

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