Chennai, Udayanidhi Stalin, son of Chief Minister M.K. Stalin, and an MLA is likely to join the DMK government soon.
The birthday bash of the younger scion of the first family of Tamil Nadu on Sunday was an indication of the clout he enjoys in the government and the party.
Tamil Nadu School education minister and DMK leader Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi, who is considered a close family friend of Udayanidhi, had openly called for the latter to join his father's government.
DMK leaders ranging from senior most leader S. Duraimurugan who is the Public Works Minister to other leaders had wished the young leader on his birthday and accolades showered upon him.
Stalin's son, who has been a movie actor, is now into film production and enjoys deep-ground support in many parts of the state. He is also the youth wing leader of the party and has placed leaders close to him in all key posts of the youth wing in the party.
A senior leader of the DMK on condition of anonymity, told IANS, "The birthday bash of Udayanidhi was like the birthday celebrations of Kalaignar Karunanidhi and if that is an indication, it is clear that he will be joining the Stalin cabinet."
Sources in the DMK told IANS that Udayanidhi is considered the de facto power centre in the party and government of Tamil Nadu and he has a major say in the postings of senior officials.
With Stalin giving an ultimatum to party cadres and lower-level leaders to win all the 40 seats from Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in the 2024 Lok sabha elections, the birthday bash of Udayanidhi is considered as a curtain raiser to the preparations for the elections.
The Chief Minister has then called upon the lower-level leaders that they should concentrate on seats where AIADMK has an upper hand in the Assembly polls.
The youth wing of the DMK has conducted birthday bash by organising blood donation camps, boat races, BP identification camps, and other celebrations. These were considered as a major move to have a connection with the local people ahead of the preparations for the elections. The party seems to have found an event to connect with the grass root in Udayanidhi's birthday celebrations.
According to a state leader of the DMK, the party has conducted around 1000 programmes in the state as part of the birthday celebrations of the young leader.