Such large leads cannot be achieved by inducements alone

The massive margins with which the AIADMK, led by Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, won 37 of the 39 Lok Sabha constituencies in Tamil Nadu has come as a strong counter to allegations of cash distribution as the basis for victory.

On Friday, DMDK founder Vijayakant said in a statement that the ruling party faced the elections with muscle and money power with reports indicating that cash was distributed in the last two days before polling.

But political analysts feel that the substantial lead the AIADMK achieved in every constituency it won pointed to a popular upsurge in its favour. Such a lead, they say, cannot be achieved by inducements alone, if at all they were distributed.

Data released by the Election Commission reveal that the margin of victory of the AIADMK candidates over their nearest rival in 11 of the 37 constituencies was higher than 2 lakh votes.

In two seats, they posted a phenomenal margin of more than 3 lakh, while in 21 others the difference was higher than one lakh of votes. Quite significantly, the party polled more than 40 per cent of the registered votes in 33 of the 37 constituencies it won.

The percentage crossed 50 in six. Also, the performance was not restricted to any particular region. In total, the AIADMK, contesting alone, managed 44.3 per cent votes and established a lead of 20.7 percentage points over its archrival DMK.

Meanwhile, the newly elected AIADMK MPs are expected to meet Ms. Jayalalithaa on Sunday morning.