Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi celebrated 50 years as a legislator at a special function in Chennai on Friday, Delhi buzzed with talk that his grand nephew, Union Telecom Minister Dayanidhi Maran, would pay with his job for the controversy his newspaper caused.

Ties between the DMK chief and Dayanidhi and elder brother Kalanidhi Maran soured this week after a series of surveys carried out by Tamil daily Dinakaran, owned by the Maran family. One of the surveys which so enraged supporters of MK Azhagiri, the chief minister’s Madurai-based second son, that they killed three persons.

Karunanidhi was so livid that he declined to invite Dayanidhi to his function. All other present and former MPs and MLAs from the DMK attended.

A source told DNA that the DMK patriarch asked Dayanidhi to submit his resignation to the Prime Minister when the latter called on him at his house.

Karunanidhi suspects Dayanidhi of trying to upstage his son MK Stalin, who is being groomed as his successor in the DMK. Sources said the popular Sun TV, also owned by the Marans, is now distancing itself from the ruling DMK. Sun TV was on Friday suddenly denied permission to telecast Karunanidhi’s felicitation, the rights were transferred to Raj TV.

By Friday the feud appeared to have blown over with Azhagiri coming to Chennai to participate in his father’s celebration. The heartburn between the brothers is now transforming into a battle between the Karunanidhi and Maran families.