Tamil Nadu’s ruling DMK-Congress combine on Friday took early leads in all five constituencies where by-elections were held on Aug 18.

Initial results released by the state election commission showed the DMK candidates in the lead at Bargur, Cumbum and Illayangudi constituencies, while Congress candidates were leading in Tondamuthur and Srivaikundam.

Tamil film star Vijaykanth’s DMDK was trailing a distant second in all five constituencies. The bypolls were boycotted by the state’s principal opposition parties AIADMK and PMK, which expressed apprehension that the polling would not be free and fair.