With crowds of excited residents waxing and waning on dusty roads draped in political colour, Madhavaram witnessed a high-pitched campaign of the AIADMK and DMK Mayoral candidates on Sunday.

With the campaign ahead of the local body polls gaining momentum, suburban localities have started getting more attention from key Mayoral candidates. In the past few days after notification of local body elections, residents of suburbs have been witnessing processions of party cadre, in labyrinths of thatched huts and concrete structures, winding all over the area.

The candidates were found vying with each other to convince each of the around 45 lakh voters in the expanded Corporation. “It is good to vote the party in power to local bodies,” said AIADMK candidate for Chennai Mayor Saidai Sa. Duraisamy.

He said that if the Corporation and State were governed by different parties, developmental works would get affected. “Local body elections have to pave way for improvement of basic amenities. The DMK says that creation of parks and drawings on walls are achievements. These are not achievements if basic amenities are not proper,” said Mr.Duraisamy, adding: “If elected, the Chief Minister would help bring in new schemes for the Corporation.”

Pat for Performance

DMK candidate and present Mayor M.Subramanian, who too has been covering around 10 to 15 wards each day, said that it was good to compete for the post. “There are many candidates for the post of Mayor, it is up to the residents to think and choose a candidate who can perform. During our campaigns, I have been seeing residential associations and self help groups appreciating our performance and the move to expand the city. They express hope that the expanded areas too would receive such attention.”

If elected, he promises a comprehensive traffic plan for the city, more parks on lands retrieved as open space reservation and speeding up of current projects.

Mr.Subramanian said that the Chennai Corporation had its own revenue with a chunk coming from property tax and they have also been successful in getting hundreds of crores of funds from the Central and State government by proper planning.

Congress Mayoral candidate Saidai P.Ravi, who begins his campaign on Monday from Anna Nagar, said that in the expanded areas roads and streetlights are issues to be addressed on a priority basis. The sewage network would follow. “Within the present city limits, traffic congestion is a major issue. We will take steps to widen roads at traffic signals. Also if we provide footpaths for pedestrians, more road space would be available,” he said.

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