Tamil Nadu MLA S Vijayadharani Quits Congress, Joins BJP Says No Leadership Roles For Women

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'No Leadership Roles For Women': Tamil Nadu MLA Quits Congress, Joins BJP

Ms Vijayadharani praised the central government for its various good schemes


Putting a rest to week-long speculation, S Vijayadharani, a three-time Congress MLA from Tamil Nadu, joined the BJP today. S Vijayadharani joined the BJP in Delhi in the presence of Union Minister L Murugan and the party’s national secretary Arvind Menon, who is the poll in charge of Tamil Nadu.

She asserted that her move will strengthen Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s hold in the southern state. S Vijayadharani comes from the family of celebrated Tamil poet late Kavimani Desiga Vinayagam Pillai.

Ms Vijayadharani praised the central government for its various good schemes and lamented that some of those are not being implemented in Tamil Nadu, where the DMK, an ally of the Congress is in power.

A lot of great things are happening to the country, she said, praising the BJP’s focus on women.

She posted on X her letter of resignation from the Congress before joining the BJP. “I am resigning from the position of primary membership and related posts held by me in the Congress party,” her post read.

A sitting MLA from Vilavancode, a constituency the BJP has won in the past, S Vijayadharani was apparently upset that neither did Congress consider her for a parliamentary seat for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls nor did it elevate her to the leader of the legislature party. The grand old party recently appointed MLA K Selvaperunthagai as the president of the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee (TNCC).

Reason To Quit Congress

“Women are not given leadership roles in Congress. Even now, someone who is junior to me has been made the leader of the legislature party. With support from the Union government, now I would be able to fulfill the infrastructure requirements of Kanniyakumari,” S Vijayadharani said.

The entry of S Vijayadharani into the BJP comes as a booster as it recently suffered a setback after AIADMK snapped ties with it. The BJP was unable to win any of the 39 Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu in the 2019 general elections.

The BJP, however, has a larger presence in Kanniyakumari. However, observers say her switch may not shift votes to the BJP as her victory from the Congress was possible only due to its alliance with the DMK.

Speculations are rife that S Vijayadharani may be BJP’s candidate from the Nagercoil Lok Sabha constituency. The BJP having a negligence presence in the state counts on its state chief Annamalai’s padayatra to expand its footprint in the state even as it tries to cobble an alliance with a few smaller parties. 

Vijayadharani, who is also a successful lawyer, is the first sitting MLA to join the BJP.

She was first elected from the Vilavancode assembly constituency in 2011 and romped home the winner in 2016 and 2021 elections. 

Before joining the BJP, the 54-year-old leader was the general secretary of AICC and chief whip of the Congress Legislative Party in the Assembly.

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