Tamil Nadu Congress MLA Vijayadharani joins BJP; hails PM Modi, Annamalai

'Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, there are a lot of great things happening for our country,' she heaped praise on Modi.

BySouth First Desk

Published Feb 24, 2024 | 4:13 PMUpdatedFeb 24, 2024 | 4:13 PM

MLA Vijayadharani joined the BJP on 24 February. (Supplied)

Tamil Nadu Congress MLA S Vijayadharani resigned from the party on on Saturday, 24 February, and joined the BJP in the presence of Minister of State for Information & Broadcasting and Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying L Murugan, at the party’s headquarters in New Delhi.

BJP National Secretary Arvind Menon, National Co-Incharge for Tamil Nadu P Sudhakar Reddy, and National Spokesperson for the BJP Syed Zafar Islam were also present.

Vijayadharani is a three-time MLA of the Vilavancode constituency in Kanniyakumari district. In a social media post, Vijayadharani said she was resigning from all posts she holds in Congress. Her resignation from the party will lead to her disqualification as MLA of Vilavancode. The seat may go to bypolls along with the Lok Sabha elections.

Vijayadharani’s shift from Congress to BJP ahead of Lok Sabha elections assumes significance given that Tamil Nadu is a stronghold of the Opposition INDIA bloc.

The move comes right after the Congress appointed K Selvaperunthagai as the new president of the Tamil Nadu unit, replacing KS Alagiri. The move has left several leaders of the party fuming.

Vijayadharani’s hopes of being appointed as floor leader of Congress in Tamil Nadu legislative assembly came crashing down after the party appointed Rajesh Kumar to the post.

Welcoming her to the party, Annamalai tweeted, “Her presence would strengthen the path of TN BJP in realising the political change in Tamil Nadu.”

Also Read: BJP grows stronger in Tamil Nadu as former AIADMK MLAs join party

Vijayadharani joins BJP

Addressing the media following Vijayadharani’s entry into the ruling party, Minister Murugan said, “She (Vijayadharani) has come to the BJP. People all over the country and all over Tamil Nadu are witnessing the developmental works of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.”

He stated that the BJP is quickly growing in Tamil Nadu. “Last week, 17 ex-MLAs and ex-MPs joined our party from Tamil Nadu,” he recalled.

“Many people from Tamil Nadu are coming forward and joining the party, and strengthening the hands of Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” he added.

Vijayadharani, interacting with the media, said, “I am happy to be transforming myself to another national party. I was with the Indian National Congress for several years. I have never shifted parties before; this is the first time I have decided to shift parties.”

Sweeping her reasons for leaving the Congress under the rug, she said, “I might have had some difficulties, however, the past is in the past.”

“Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, there are a lot of great things happening for our country. Internationally, our country has a high profile. The people of the country are also quite happy with the various schemes of this governemnt,” she said, heaping praise on the Prime Minister.

She added, “I am concerned, however, that good schemes of the governemnt, like the ration scheme and certain other schemes are not being promoted or even considered in states like Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. In these states, these schemes are not being accepted at all and because of that people are being denied good things. Such issues should be considered by these states. They may need some strong persuasion to understand that the BJP should be strengthened further.”

She further praised the state BJP president K Annamalai and said that he is “doing a great job”.

Also Read: Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin unveils State Policy for Women 2024

A woman for women

“There is going to be a real transformation of the party in Tamil Nadu and I will also be joining them in the process. I strongly feel that more focus needs to be placed on women and that is being achieved by the party,” she said, adding that the BJP has ensured more number of women MPs and MLAs, beyond bringing out the Women’s Reservation Bill and enacting in the Parliament.

“Women leaders are more important to the country and in states like Tamil Nadu, women leaders should be considered for the welfare of women. I am overwhelmingly happy about the promotion of women like me into the party system and so I accept to work for the party with utmost loyalty,” she concluded.

Beyond politics, Vijayadharani is an advocate in the Supreme Court. While with the Congress, she had served as the General Secretary of the All India Mahila Congress, and Congress Legislative Party Chief Whip in the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly.

She is great-granddaughter of eminent Tamil poet and social reformer, late Kavimani Desigavinayagam Pillai.