Udhayanidhi will be sworn in as Minister on Dec 14: TN Raj Bhavan

Udhayanidhi Stalin, DMK’s youth wing leader and son of Chief Minister M.K. Stalin, will be inducted into the state cabinet on December 14. A reshuffle of the portfolios held by some ministers would also be undertaken on that day.

A Raj Bhavan press release on Monday evening said, Mr Stalin has recommended to the Governor to induct Mr Udhayanidhi, who represents Chepauk-Thiruvallikanni constituency, in the Council of Ministers. “The Governor has approved the recommendation,” the release said adding the swearing-in ceremony would be held at 9.30 am on Wednesday at the Durbar Hall in Raj Bhavan.

The 45-year-old Udhayanidhi is a first time MLA and he was elected in 2021 Assembly election. He is also an actor and filmmaker.

December 14 is the penultimate day of the auspicious Tamil month of Kartigai, and Udhayanidhi will be sworn in on 9.30 am, an official statement said. Though Stalin professes to be an atheist in line with the DMK’s rationalist ideals, Udhayanidhi, his mother Durga Stalin, and Stalin’s influential son-in-law Sabareesan are all believers.

Incidentally, Stalin himself had to wait in the shadows for a long time before his father and DMK patriarch, the late M Karunanidhi, let him climb up the ranks, holding a ministerial portfolio for the first time only in his late 50s.

Two family members told the media that Udhayanidhi’s mother didn’t want her son “to suffer the same fate”.While Udhayanidhi was hesitant to accept the responsibility because he already has a lot on his plate, they said, “She was adamant that he not be forced to wait until his late 50s or 60s to assume a significant position in politics.”

Like how Stalin learnt under Karunanidhi as first a minister and later as deputy chief minister, in 2009–2011, sources said there would be a senior secretary teaching Udhayanidhi the ropes. Party leaders give the example of IAS officer Ashok Vardhan Shetty, who is credited with implementing many of the effective strategies behind DMK schemes under the Karunanidhi administration, especially in portfolios held by Stalin.

On plans for Udhayanidhi, including the readying of his office, a senior DMK minister said: “Numerous sports-related development projects have already been announced by us. Plus, in the state, 234 sports complexes are being built, and Udhayanidhi will visit each one. He will travel from Nagapattinam to Krishnagiri, and Tiruvallur to Kanyakumari. He will lead all the celebrations and sporting events like Jallikattu during the Pongal celebrations.”

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