As many as 16 Tamil Nadu Ministers, many of them DMK stalwarts, were defeated in the Assembly election. Higher Education Minister K Ponmudy (Villupuram), Agriculture Minister Veerapandi S Arumugam (Sankagiri), Health Minister MRK Panneerselvam (Kurinjipadi), Transport Minister K N Nehru, Rural Industries and Animal Husbandry Minister Pongalur N Palanisamy (Coimbatore South) fell by the wayside in the anti-DMK landslide. Mr. Ponmudy lost to a former AIADMK Minister, C Ve Shanmugam.

Others who bit the dust were Tourism and Registration Minister N Suresh Rajan (Kanniyakumari), Backward Classes Minister K K S S R Ramachandran (Aruppukkottai), Labour Minister T M Anbarasan (Pallavaram), Commercial Taxes Minister S N M Ubayadullah (Thanjavur), Forests Minister N Selvaraj (Manachanallur), Highways Minister Vellakoil Saminathan (Madathukulam), Social Welfare Minister Geetha Jeevan (Thoothukudi), Adidravidar Welfare Minister R Tamilarasi (Manamadurai), Fisheries Minister K P P Sami (Thiruvottiyur) and U Mathivanan (Kilvelur). Information Technology Minister Poongothai Aladi Aruna had a narrow defeat in Alangulam by a margin of 299 votes.

Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, who was elected from Tiruvarur for his 12th term in the Assembly, led the group of victorious Ministers.

The list included Law Minister Durai Murugan (Katpadi), Revenue and Housing Minister I Periasamy (Athoor), Food Minister E V Velu (Tiruvannamalai), School Education Minister Thangam Thennarasu (Tiruchuli), Sports and Youth Welfare Minister T P M Mohideen Khan (Palayamkottai), Slum Clearance Board Minister Suba Thangavelan (Tiruvadanai) and Khadi Minister K Ramachandran (Coonoor). Mr. Periasamy defeated his nearest rival by a margin of over 53,000 votes.

Close battle

Deputy Chief Minister M. K. Stalin was locked in a close battle with Saidai S Duraisamy (AIADMK) at Kolathur, in which fortunes swung like a pendulum in favour of one candidate to another, until the DMK leader pipped Mr. Duraisamy by 2,423 votes. Finance Minister K Anbazhagan, also the DMK general secretary and a nine-time Member of the Legislative Assembly, was trailing JCD Prabhakaran of the AIADMK at Villivakkam constituency in Chennai.