Congress nominee from Sivaganga and Finance Minister P Chidambaram's son Karti Chidambaram says he has been working for the party since 1996.
In an interview with Sanjay Jog, Karti defends his father’s decision not to contest the polls and the government's management of the economy in difficult circumstances.
The BJP has accused your father of turning his back on an electoral fight. Is he not ready to face the public?
My father has contested nine elections since 1977. He has won seven terms to the Lok Sabha. He has a proven record of winning elections.
The BJP has also alleged your father transformed a Shining India into Gloom India during his tenure as finance minister.
The government has done a creditable job of managing the economy in a trying global environment. The BJP's comment is mere sloganeering.
The Congress is fighting elections on its own while the BJP has tied up with five regional parties. The AIADMK and DMK have also already launched their campaigns. How do you rate your prospects of winning from Sivaganga?
All political parties are contesting without strong alliances. The AIADMK has no alliance partners. The DMK has no national ally. The BJP with the DMDK, MDMK, PMK, IJK, KNMK has only an alphabet soup of no electoral value.
Can you withstand the anti-Congress mood among voters?
There is no anti-Congress mood. It's mere propaganda.
The Congress' decision to nominate you is another exhibition of dynastic politics at work.
I addressed my first public meeting at six, I have been active in the party since 1996. All those familiar with the state's politics are aware of my work. I have marked my time. I am my father's son, I haven't been fast-tracked.
Now that you are in the fray, is your father going to retire from politics?
He will continue in politics and public life.
What made you join politics?
I believe politics is a great agent for change. I have been politically inclined since I was 14.
Image: Karti P Chidambaram and P Chidambaram with Sonia Gandhi, at her residence in Delhi.