Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam

Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (transl. Dravidian Progressive Federation), (DMK); is a political party in India, particularly in the state of Tamil Nadu and Union Territory of Puducherry.[5] It is currently the Opposition party in Tamil Nadu and is part of the Indian political front the United Progressive Alliance (UPA).

Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam
PresidentM. K. Stalin
General SecretaryDurai Murugan
Lok Sabha leaderT. R. Baalu
Rajya Sabha leaderTiruchi Siva
TreasurerT. R. Baalu
FounderC. N. Annadurai
Founded17 September 1949 (71 years ago) (1949-09-17)
Split fromDravidar Kazhagam
Preceded byJustice Party(1917–1944)
Dravidar Kazhagam (1944–1949)
HeadquartersAnna Arivalayam, Anna Salai, Chennai– 600018
NewspaperMurasoli (daily)
The Rising Sun (weekly journal)
Labour wingLabour Progressive Federation (LPF)
IdeologySocial democracy[1]
Social justice[2][1]
Colours     Red
ECI StatusState Party[4]
AllianceThird Front (1989-90, 1996-98)
National Democratic Alliance (1999–2004)
Democratic Progressive Alliance (2014–2016)
United Progressive Alliance (2006–2013) (2016–present)
Seats in Lok Sabha
24 / 543
Seats in Rajya Sabha
7 / 245
Seats in Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly
97 / 234
Seats in Puducherry Legislative Assembly
3 / 30
Election symbol
Indian Election Symbol Rising Sun.png
Party flag
Flag DMK.svg

DMK is a Dravidian party, adhering to the social democratic and social justice principles of C. N. Annadurai and Periyar E. V. Ramasamy.[1] It was founded in 1949 by Annadurai as a breakaway faction from the Dravidar Kazhagam (known as Justice Party until 1944) headed by Ramasamy.[6][7][8]

DMK was headed by Annadurai (as Secretary general) from 1949 until his death on 3 February 1969.[9] He also served as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu from 1967 to 1969. Under Annadurai, in 1967, DMK became the first party, other than the Indian National Congress, to win state-level elections with a clear majority on its own in any state in India. M. Karunanidhi followed Annadurai as the first President of DMK from 1969 until his own death on 7 August 2018.[10] He also served as Chief Minister for five non-consecutive terms, in two of which he was dismissed by the Central government.[11] At present, the DMK is led by Karunanidhi's son M. K. Stalin, who served as Deputy Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu from 2009 to 2011. Stalin was elected as the party's Executive Leader in 2017 and then was unanimously elected as Party President by the General body of DMK in 2018, after Karunanidi's death.[12]

Following the 2019 general election, DMK emerged as the third largest party in the Lok Sabha with 24 seats.[13]

The head office of the party is called Anna Arivalayam, and is located at Anna Salai, Teynampet, Chennai, Tamil Nadu.


DMK FoundationEdit

The party, which derived from parent parties,

  • Justice Party ( South Indian Liberal Federation )
  • Dravidar Kazhagam
  • Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam

Justice PartyEdit

DMK traces its roots to the South Indian Liberal Federation (Justice Party) founded by Dr C. Natesa Mudaliar in 1916, in the presence of P. Thyagaraya Chetty, Dr P.T. Rajan, Dr T. M. Nair, Dr Arcot Ramasamy Mudaliar and a few others in Victoria Public Hall Madras Presidency.[2] The Justice Party, whose objectives included social equality and justice, came to power in the first General Elections to the Madras Presidency in 1920.[14] Communal division between Brahmins and non-Brahmins began in the presidency during the late-19th and early-20th century, mainly due to caste prejudices and disproportionate Brahminical representation in government jobs. The Justice Party's foundation marked the culmination of several efforts to establish an organisation to represent the non-Brahmins in Madras and is seen as the start of the Dravidian Movement.[15][16][17]

E. V. Ramasami (Periyar), a popular Tamil reformist leader of the time, had joined Indian National Congress in 1919, to oppose what he considered the Brahminic leadership of the party.[18] Periyar's experience at the Vaikom Satyagraha made him to start the Self-Respect Movement in 1926 which was rationalistic and "anti-Brahministic".[19] He quit Congress and in 1935, he joined the Justice Party.

In the 1937 elections, the Justice Party lost and the Indian National Congress under C. Rajagopalachari (Rajaji) came to power in Madras Presidency. Rajaji's introduction of Hindi as a compulsory subject in schools led to the anti-Hindi agitations, led by Periyar and his associates.[20]

Dravidar KazhagamEdit

Self respect movementEdit

In August 1944, Periyar created the 'Dravidar Kazhagham' out of the Justice Party and the Self-Respect Movement at the Salem Provincial Conference.[21] Dravidar Kazhagam, conceived as a movement and not a political party, insisted on an independent nation for Dravidians called Dravida Nadu consisting of areas that were covered under Madras Presidency.

The party at its inception retained the flag of the South Indian Liberal Federation which had a picture of a traditional type of balance signifying the idea of equality.[22] Its central theme was to remove the degraded status imposed on Dravidians, and to denote this, the party adopted a black flag with a red circle inside it, the black signifying their degradation and the red denoting the movement for upliftment.[23]

It opposed Brahminical social, political and ritual dominance, and aimed to form a separate country of Dravida Nadu, to include either all of South India or the predominantly Tamil-speaking regions.

Dravida Munnetra KazhagamEdit

Over the years, many disagreements arose between Periyar and his followers. In 1949, several of his followers led by C. N. Annaduraidecided to split from Dravidar Kazhagham, after an aged Periyar married a young woman Maniammai and appointed his young wife to act as his successor to lead the party, superseding senior party leaders. Until then E. V. K. Sampath, the nephew of Periyar, was considered his political heir.[24][25]

  1. C N.Annadurai, ( on 17 September 1949 along with )
  2. E. V. K. Sampath,
  3. V. R. Nedunchezhiyan,
  4. K. A. Mathiazhagan,
  5. N. V. Natarajan called '' later in 1950's known as Aimberum Thalaivargal(after mummunai poorattum) '' (Great Five Leaders)

along with M. Karunanidhi then an emerging screenwriter and thousands of others in Robinson park in Royapuram in Chennai announced the formation of the DMK. The name of the party (DMK) was announced by Kudanthai Perunthagai. K. K. Neelamegam.

After split from Dravidar KazhagamEdit

C.N. Annadurai's era (1949–1969)Edit

DMK's Anti-Hindi Imposition agitationsEdit

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) which split from the Dravidar Kazhagam in 1949, inherited the anti-Hindi Imposition policies of its parent organisation. DMK's founder Annadurai had earlier participated in the anti-Hindi imposition agitations during 1938–40 and in the 1940s. In July 1953, the DMK launched an agitation for changing the name of a town from Kallakudi to Dalmiapuram. They claimed that the town's name (after Ramkrishna Dalmia) symbolised the exploitation of South India by the North.[26][27] On 15 July 1953, M. Karunanidhi (later Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu) and other DMK members erased the Hindi name in Dalmiapuram railway station's name board and lay down on the tracks. In the altercation with the Police that followed the protests, two DMK members lost their lives and several others including Karunanidhi and Kannadhasan were arrested.[28]

In the 1950s DMK continued its anti-Hindi Imposition policies along with the secessionist demand for Dravida Nadu. On 28 January 1956, Annadurai along with Periyar and Rajaji signed a resolution passed by the Academy of Tamil Culture endorsing the continuation of English as the official language.[29][30] On 21 September 1957 the DMK convened an anti-Hindi Conference to protest against the imposition of Hindi. It observed 13 October 1957 as "anti-Hindi Day".[31][32] On 31 July 1960, another open air anti-Hindi conference was held at Kodambakkam, Madras.[33] In November 1963, DMK dropped its secessionist demand in the wake of the Sino-Indian War and the passage of the anti-secessionist 16th Amendment to the Indian Constitution. But the anti-Hindi stance remained and hardened with the passage of Official Languages Act of 1963.[34] The DMK's view on Hindi's qualifications for official language status were reflected in Annadurai's response to the "numerical superiority of Hindi" argument: "If we had to accept the principle of numerical superiority while selecting our national bird, the choice would have fallen not on the peacock but on the common crow."

First ElectionEdit

DMK entered the electoral fray for 1957 State Assembly elections with M Karunanidhi winning the Kulithalai constituency while other seniors members like V. R. Nedunchezhiyan losing from Salem. In 1962 another prominent actor S.S.Rajendran ("SSR") contested in Theni, legislative assembly election, against the then popular congress leader N. R. Theagarajan and won the seat.

Formation of State GovernmentEdit

In 1967, DMK came to power in Madras province 18 years after its formation and 10 years after it had first entered electoral politics. This began the Dravidian era in Madras province which later became Tamil Nadu. In 1967, the Congress lost nine states to opposition parties, but it was only in Madras state that a single non-Congress party majority was achieved.[35] The electoral victory of 1967 is also reputed to an electoral fusion among the non-Congress parties to avoid a split in the Opposition votes. Rajagopalachari, a former senior leader of the Congress party, had by then left the Congress and launched the right-wing Swatantra Party. He played a vital role in bringing about the electoral fusion amongst the opposition parties to align against the Congress.[36] At that time, his cabinet was the youngest in the country.[37]

Self-respect marriages ActEdit

Annadurai legalised Self-respect marriages for the first time in the country. Such marriages were void of priests to preside over the ceremony and thus did not need a Brahmin to carry out the wedding.[38] Self-respect marriages were a brainchild of Periyar, who regarded the then conventional marriages as mere financial arrangements which often caused great debt through dowry. Self-Respect marriages, according to him, encouraged inter-caste marriages and caused arranged marriages to be replaced by love marriages.[39] Annadurai was also the first to use subsidising of the price of rice for election victory. He promised one rupee a measure of rice, which he initially implemented once in government, but had to withdraw later. Subsidising rice costs are still used as an election promise in Tamil Nadu.[40]

Madras State to Tamil Nadu (14 January 1969)Edit

It was Annadurai's government that renamed the Madras State to its present-day form declaring officially as Tamil Nadu. The name change itself was first presented in the upper house (Rajya Sabha) of the Parliament of India by Bhupesh Gupta, a communist MP from West Bengal, but was then defeated.[41] With Annadurai as chief minister, the state assembly succeeded in passing the bill renaming the states.[42]

Two language policy (1967)Edit

Anna was instrumental in organising the World Tamil Conference under the aegis of UNESCO in 1967.[43] Another major achievement of Annadurai's government was to introduce a two language policy[which?] over the then popular three language formula.[44] The three language formula, which was implemented in the neighbouring states of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala, entitled students to study three languages: the regional language, English and Hindi.[45]

World Tamil conference (1967)Edit

It was during the period of his Chief Ministership that the Second World Conference was conducted on a grand scale on 3 January 1968.[46] Nevertheless, when a commemorative stamp was released to mark the Tamil conference, Annadurai expressed his dissatisfaction that the stamp contained Hindi when it was for Tamil.[47] Annadurai also issued an order for the removal of the pictures of gods and religious symbols from public offices and buildings.[46]

Karunanidhi's era (1969–2018)Edit

DMK was headed by M. Karunanidhi from 1969 until his death on 7 August 2018.[10] He also served as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu five terms.

Karunanidhi's Dmk five slogans : ( Aimperum Muzhakkam )Edit

M. Karunanidhi in 1970 Anna's 1st anniversary, DMK statewide conference held in Trichy where Five slogans were released at the conference. Those are,[48][49][50]

  1. The party always follows the footsteps of Annadurai,
  2. An egalitarian society will be formed,
  3. Forever, the party opposes the imposition of Hindi,
  4. Poverty will be overcome through a peaceful manner,
  5. Autonomy for state governments and Union government by coalition.
MGR factionEdit

M. G. Ramachandran (MGR) who was a popular actor and the then party treasurer, the political feud between MGR and the party president Karunanidhi emerged as an aftermath of the latter calling himself "Mujib of Tamil Nadu". In 1972, MGR called for a boycott of the party's General Council. With the crisis falling into call for corruption probe by MGR where he was a treasurer, he was eventually suspended from the General Council by the high power committee of DMK. Thus emerged a new party All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK).[51]

Five terms Chief MinisterEdit

Karunanidhi became an MLA 13 times,5times chief minister and one time member of council in Tamil Nadu legislative assembly.

Kalaignar fought for the right of CM's to hoist the National Flag in a StateEdit

Karunanidhi secured right for chief ministers to unfurl Tricolour on Independence Day in 1974, he became first Tamil CM to do so. Karunanidhi secured a precious right for all the Chief Ministers from Indira Gandhi.[52][53][54][55]

Elections under Karunanidhi's PresidencyEdit
  • In the 1977, DMK lost the Assembly elections to MGR's AIADMK, and stayed out of power in the state till 1989.[56] After MGR's death in December 1987, AIADMK split into two factions between Janaki (MGR's wife) and Jayalalithaa. DMK returned to power in 1989 State assembly elections and Karunanidhi took over as chief minister in January 1989.
  • in the 1991 election was held on the backdrop of DMK government dissolved within 2 years of formation due to pressure from Rajiv gandhi, in the same year Rajiv was killed by Human bomb during election campaign. Due to DMK's pro Tamil stance and the dismissal of the state government mid way by Rajiv, people's presumption was against DMK and the sympathy wave in favour of AIADMK–Congress alliance and the DMK was deprived of any seats in the Parliament.
  • In the 1996 state elections, DMK came to power on strength of corruption charges against J.Jayalalithaa and the alliance with Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC), headed by G.K. Moopanar and supported by cine actor Rajinikanth. However, in 2001, the AIADMK, on strength of a strong alliance and the incumbency factor against DMK, came back to power in the state assembly elections.
  • In the 2004 parliamentary elections, DMK formed an alliance with Congress, the Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) and the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) and swept a grand Victory, the alliance winning all 40 seats including Puducherry. This enabled 7 ministerial posts in the Central government and influential power to DMK.
  • Two years later in 2006, the same alliance won in the state assembly elections and the DMK for the first time formed a minority government in the state with help from Congress. M Karunanidhi became the Chief Minister of the state for the fifth time. The DMK-Congress alliance was also successful in the 2009 parliamentary elections.
  • In the 2011 Assembly elections, held in the wake of the 2G case and allegations of nepotism, the DMK won only 23 seats, 127 seats less than earlier.
  • In the 2014 Lok Sabha election DMK failed to win any seats; however, by vote percentage it was second only to AIADMK.
  • in the 2016 state assembly elections gave DMK 89 MLA's. The most number for an opposition party in the history of Tamil Nadu legislative assembly.

M. K. Stalin era (2018–present)Edit

Karunanidhi died on 7 August 2018, leaving the party in the hands of his son, M.K Stalin. Stalin had been appointed as the working president in January 2017 when Karunanidhi's health started declining, and had previously been named heir apparent by his father. Stalin thus became the second DMK president since the party's inception.[57] On 3 February 2020, M. K. Stalin announced that Prashant Kishor was signed up as a party strategist for the upcoming 2021 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election.[58]

M.K Stalin's Dmk five slogans: (Aimperum Muzhakkam)Edit
M.K. Stalin calls on the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh in New Delhi on 4 July 2007.

M. K. Stalin in 25 March 2018 DMK statewide conference held in Erode where Five slogans were released at the conference. Those are,[59][60][61]

  1. Let's keep an eye on the Kalaignar's command,
  2. Let us grow and admire Tamil,
  3. Let's crush the power pile,
  4. Let us protect the humanity from extremism,
  5. Let us grow a prosperous Tamil Nadu.
Elections under M.K Stalin's PresidencyEdit
2019 General election – Secular Progressive AllianceEdit

M.K.Stalin formed Secular Progressive Alliance in Tamil Nadu under the United Progressive Alliance in the center and led the alliance in 2019 general election.[62][63] MK Stalin and his alliance in Tamil Nadu won 39 out of 40 seats in the parliament and 12 out of 21 in the Assembly by-election with 52% vote share.[64][65]

2020 Tamilnadu Local body election (Rural)Edit

The DMK led alliance won the 2019 Tamil Nadu local body elections under the Secular Progressive alliance.[66][67]

Party ideologyEdit

Dravidian NationalismEdit

The Anti-Hindi Imposition agitations of 1965 forced the central government to abandon its efforts to use Hindi as the only official language of the country; still Hindi usage continued as Indian government employees are asked to write as much as 65% of the letters and memoranda in Hindi.[3]

State AutonomyEdit

After emergency invoked by Indira Gandhi more state powers like school education,medical are moved to state list to central list M.Karunadhi Announced trichy conference after death of Anna. " state Autonomy " principal to fight their state aspirations. In April 1974, the DMK government brought in a resolution in the House urging the Centre to accept the Rajamannar Committee recommendations on state autonomy and amend the Constitution of India to pave the way for a true federal system.[3]

Social justiceEdit

The DMK reconstituted the disabled persons welfare board to Differently Abled Persons Departments and the changed words for transgender to more appropriate terms like Thirunangai and Thirunambi.[2]

Party symbolEdit

DMK Official flag and symbol

The Party's election symbol is the " sun rising from between two mountains ", with a black and red flag often pictured. The symbol was inspired from leader and scriptwriter M. Karunanidhi's 1950s play "Udaya Suryan", and is intended to signify the "rising" spirit of the Dravidian people.[68]

In the 1957 poll, the DMK was not recognised by the Election Commission. The party was grouped as independents and was not united by its rising sun symbol and were forced to contest under the rooster symbol.[69]

Election historyEdit

Tamil Nadu General ElectionEdit

Year Legislature Party leader Seats won (DMK+) Change in seats Percentage of votes Popular vote Outcome
1957 1957 Indian general election in Madras C.N. Annadurai
8 / 41
  8 DMK grouped under independent won a total of 8 seats
1962 1962 Indian general election in Madras C.N. Annadurai
7 / 41
  1 18.64% 2,315,610 Opposition
1967 1967 Indian general election in Madras C.N. Annadurai
36 / 39
  29 51.79% 7,996,264 government
1971 1971 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
38 / 39
  2 55.61% 8,869,095 government
1977 1977 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
5 / 39
  33 37.84% 6,758,517 Opposition
1980 1980 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
37 / 39
  32 55.89% 10,290,515 government
1984 1984 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
2 / 39
  36 37.04% 8,006,513 Opposition
1989 1989 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
1 / 39
  1 33.78% 8,918,905 Opposition
1991 1991 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
0 / 39
  1 27.64% 6,823,581 Opposition
1996 1996 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
39 / 39
  39 54.96% 14,940,474 Government
1998 1998 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
9 / 39
  30 42.72% 10,937,809 Opposition
1999 1999 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
26 / 39
  17 46.41% 12,638,602 Government
2004 2004 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
39 / 39
  13 57.40% 16,483,390 Government
2009 2009 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
27 / 39
  12 42.54% 12,929,043 Government
2014 2014 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. Karunanidhi
0 / 39
  27 26.8% 10,243,767 Opposition
2019 2019 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu M. K. Stalin
38 / 39
  39 52% 22,303,698 Opposition

Tamil Nadu Assembly ElectionEdit

Year Legislature Party leader Seats won (DMK+) Change in seats Percentage of votes Popular vote Outcome
1957 1957 Madras Legislative Assembly election C.N. Annadurai
15 / 205
  15 DMK grouped under independent won a total of 15 seats
1962 1962 Madras Legislative Assembly election C.N. Annadurai
50 / 205
  37 27.10% 3,435,633 opposition
1967 1967 Madras Legislative Assembly election C.N. Annadurai
179 / 234
  129 52.59% 8,051,437 government
1971 1971 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
205 / 234
  26 54.30% 8,506,078 government
1977 1977 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
48 / 234
  157 24.89% 4,258,771 opposition
1980 1980 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
69 / 234
  21 44.43% 8,371,718 opposition
1984 1984 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
34 / 234
  35 37.00% 8,021,293 opposition
1989 1989 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
150 / 234
  116 37.89% 9,135,220 government
1991 1991 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
7 / 234
  143 30.05% 7,405,935 opposition
1996 1996 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
221 / 234
  214 53.77% 14,600,748 government
2001 2001 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
37 / 234
  138 38.67% 10,841,157 government
2006 2006 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
163 / 234
  71 26.5% 8,728,716 government
2011 2011 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
31 / 234
  132 39.5% 14,530,215 opposition
2016 2016 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. Karunanidhi
89 / 234
  58 40% 17,175,374 opposition
2021 2021 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election M. K. Stalin TBD TBD TBD TBD TBD


Year Election Votes Polled Seats Won
1974 3rd Assembly 47,823 2
1977 4th Assembly 30,441 3
1980 5th Assembly 68,030 14
1985 6th Assembly 87,754 5
1990 7th Assembly 101,127 9
1991 8th Assembly 96,607 4
1996 9th Assembly 105,392 7
2001 10th Assembly 83,679 7
2006 11th Assembly 7
2011 12th Assembly 3
2016 13th Assembly 2
Year Election Votes Polled Seats Won
1984 8th Lok Sabha 97,672 0
1989 9th Lok Sabha 157,250 0
1991 10th Lok Sabha 140,313 0
1996 11th Lok Sabha 183,702 0
1998 12th Lok Sabha 168,122 1

List of presidents of DMKEdit

S.No Portrait Name
Tenure Duration
1   M. Karunanidhi
27 July 1969 – 7 August 2018 49 years, 11 days
2   M. K. Stalin
28 August 2018 – Incumbent 2 years, 28 days

List of Chief Ministers from DMKEdit

Chief Minister of Madras StateEdit

Chief Minister of Tamil NaduEdit

  • C. N. Annadurai (14 January 1969 – 3 February 1969)
  • M. Karunanidhi (10 February 1969 – 4 January 1971), (15 March 1971 – 31 January 1976), (27 January 1989 – 30 January 1991), (13 May 1996 – 13 May 2001), (13 May 2006 – 15 May 2011)

Acting Chief Minister of Tamil NaduEdit

Chief Minister of PondicherryEdit

List of Deputy Chief Ministers from DMKEdit

Deputy Chief Minister of Tamil NaduEdit

List of Leaders of OppositionEdit

Tamil NaduEdit


Current Office Bearers / Prominent MembersEdit

Member Position in government Party Position
M. K. Stalin[70] Leader of the Opposition in the TNLA, Former Deputy Chief Minister President
Duraimurugan[71] Deputy Leader of Opposition, Former State Minister in the TNLA General Secretary
T. R. Baalu[72] Member of parliament (Lok Sabha) and Former Union Minister for ship and roadways Treasurer and Party Lok Sabha Leader
K. N. Nehru[73] Member of Legislative Assembly, Former State Minister for transport Principal Secretary
R. S. Bharathi[74] Member of parliament (Rajya Sabha), Former Chairman of Alandur Municipality Organization Secretary
I. Periyasamy[75] Member of Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly, Former State Minister Revenue and Housing Deputy General Secretary
Subbulakshmi Jagadeesan[76] Former Minister of State in the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment Deputy General Secretary
Anthiyur P. Selvaraj Member of parliament, Former State Minister for Handloom Deputy General Secretary
K. Ponmudy Member of Legislative Assembly and Former Minister of State in the Ministry of Higher Education Deputy General Secretary
A. Raja Member of parliament (Lok Sabha) and Former Union Minister Deputy General Secretary
T. K. S. Elangovan[77] Member of parliament (Rajya Sabha) Official Spokesperson

High level executive committee


The DMK party runs two newspapers, one each in English and Tamil, namely "The Rising Sun" (weekly journal) and "Murasoli" (daily) respectively.[78] Kalaignar TV is a channel started on 15 September 2007 and managed by Kanimozhi and Dayalu Ammal, the daughter and wife of Karunanidhi. The sister channels of Kalaignar TV are Isaiaruvi (music channel), Seithigal (news channel), Sirippoli (comedy channel), Kalaignar Asia and Chithiram (Tamil cartoon channel).[79]


Indira Gandhi dismissed the Karunanidhi government in 1976 based on charges of possible secession and corruption. The DMK government has been indicted by the Sarkaria commission for corruption in allotting tenders for the Veeranam drainage project.[80]

Connections with LTTEEdit

The interim report of Justice Jain Commission, which oversaw the investigation into Rajiv Gandhi's assassination, indicted Karunanidhi for abetting the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).[81] The interim report recommended that Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi and the DMK party be held responsible for abetting Rajiv Gandhi's murderers. The final report contained no such allegations.[82]

Allegations of nepotismEdit

Karunanidhi's nephew, Murasoli Maran, was a Union Minister; however, it has been pointed out that he was in politics long before Karunanidhi became the Chief Minister in 1969.[83]

Many political opponents and DMK party senior leaders have been critical of the rise of M. K. Stalin in the party. But some of the party men have pointed out that Stalin has come up on his own.[84]

Karunanidhi has been accused of helping Murasoli Maran's son Kalanidhi Maran, who runs Sun Network, India's second largest television network. According to Forbes, Kalanidhi is among India's richest 20, with $2.9 billion.[85]

It has been pointed out that Karunanidhi has hesitated to take action against his erring family members.[86]

Karunanidhi is also accused of allowing Azhagiri to function as an extraconstitutional authority in Madurai.[87] The Dinakaran newspaper case was handed over to the CBI. But the District and Sessions court acquitted all the 17 accused in that case.[88]

Involvement in 2G caseEdit

DMK has been facing allegations regarding 2G spectrum case.[89] The case was brought into limelight in 2010 when case filed against Minister for Communications and Information Technology A. Raja had been reported. 2G licences were issued to private telecom players at throwaway prices in 2008. The CAG estimated on the basis of 3G auction that the 2G Spectrum case had cost the government 1.76 lakh crore (equivalent to 3.2 trillion or US$45 billion in 2019) (short scale). Rules and procedures were flouted while issuing licences.[90] The CBI in the Supreme Court has since indicated that the factual loss is around 30,000 crore (equivalent to 540 billion or US$7.6 billion in 2019). One of the party's TV channel stations, Kalaignar TV was raided by Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officers in connection with the 2G Spectrum case on 19 February 2011.[91] Karunanidhi's daughter MK Kanimozhi arrested and sent to Tihar jail on 20 May 2011 for alleged kickbacks in 2G case. She has been arrested for the illegal transfer of money to the DMK's official channel Kalaignar TV. DMK MP A Raja is the prime accused in 2G case and sent to Tihar Jail. Kanimozhi was subsequently released on bail on 29 November 2011[92] On 21 December a Delhi Court cleared all charges of all the members, including former telecom minister A. Raja and DMK Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi in the 2G spectrum allocation case since the prosecution failed to prove the charges beyond reasonable doubt.[93][94]


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