R Mahendran, who was among the heavyweights to quit the Kamal Haasan-led Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM) following the Assembly poll debacle, joined the DMK today in the presence of party president and Chief Minister M K Stalin.
Led by Coimbatore-based Mahendran, over 200 of his supporters joined the Dravidian party at party headquarters ”Anna Arivalayam” here.
Welcoming them, Mr Stalin said he was expecting the former MNM vice-president to join the DMK much earlier, when the Election Commission announced the Assembly polls.
Had Mahendran joined the party before the April 6 polls, DMK could have won hands down the Assembly segments in Coimbatore and the rest of the western Kongu region, he said.
“Nothing is lost even now. Now you have come. Hereafter Mahendran is going to take up that task (of winning the Kongu region for the DMK),” the Chief Minister said, adding that his arrival would add to the party’s influence.
After MNM came a cropper in the Assembly polls, Mr Mahendran, an entrepreneur, quit the party on May 6, blaming lack of internal democracy and the way the party functioned under Kamal Haasan.
The former MNM deputy chief had claimed that his decision to quit was not based on victory or loss in polls but on the party’s functioning.
Mr Haasan had said Mahendran chose to quit when he was about to be sacked.