The future of Tamil Nadu politics after Jayalalitha and Karunanidhi

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The future of Tamil Nadu politics after Jayalalitha and Karunanidhi

Many people are talking about a vacuum in Tamil Nadu politics after Jayalalitha and Karunanidhi. These arch rivals were fighting hard to gain power for the past 25 years and these two managed to outshine each other at regular intervals. It was a battle between a poet and an actress and, this rivalry had a strong impact on the lives of the common people in both bad and good ways.

Vacuum is temporary not permanent

Can we expect a vacuum after these two? Jayalalitha passed away recently and Karunanidhi is struggling with his deteriorating health. It is a reality that these two people are not going to be in the limelight anymore. When tallest leaders recede, people always start talking about permanent vacuum and they often feel that these leaders are simply irreplaceable. This popular psychology does not carry enough weight because history has shown time again that the emergence of a new leader fills this vacuum sooner or later.

MGR death created a vacuum but later filled by Jayalalitha

In 1987, Tamil Nadu lost its tallest son, MG Ramachandran popularly known as MGR. Everybody thought about a big vacuum and for many; there was no one like MGR. He was a demigod in eyes of the Tamil people. What happened after his death? Jayalalitha emerged as the new leader and she became even more popular than MGR. Quite similarly, someone else will emerge in due course of time after Jayalalitha and Karunanidhi to guide the Tamil politics.

After Karunanidhi, everybody knows that his son Stalin is going to take over. In fact; he has taken over and this man is ruling the DMK party now. After Jayalalitha, someone else is going to take over the AIDMK mantle sooner or later. Only time can tell who is the king or queen in making.

Opinions (2)

It is going to take a while for supporters and other leaders of the AIADMK  to come to terms with the huge void created by the death of Jayalalitha. She had been one of India's most flamboyant and controversial leaders. 

It is, of course, not easy to replace Jayalalithaa. She has led the party for over three decades now and that cannot be easily replaced. It’s a political vacuum primarily in the AIADMK,” said Ramu Manivannan, a political analyst and professor and head, department of politics and public administration, University of Madras.

However, according to Manivannan, the fact that the party is in power will help in a transition. “A large number of people will rally with whoever the leader is because they have the mandate of the people for the next four years. They are secure in terms of tenure of the state government which is reassuring for a transition,” he said.

The current situation has created a vacuum in Tamil Nadu politics, triggering the question as to whether a third political force can create a space for itself. But sooner or later the space is going to be filled.. and the vacuum is just a temporary phase in Tamil Nadu politics. 


Someone will emerge in due course of time. 

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