Thondaiman attributes win to Chief Minister's people-oriented schemes

The All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) on Friday won the by-election to the Pudukottai Assembly constituency by a huge margin of 71,498 votes.

While AIADMK candidate Karthik Thondaiman secured 1,01,998 votes, Jahir Hussain of the Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) polled 30,500. All other 18 candidates lost their deposit.

Mr. Thondaiman established a lead of 3,233 votes in the first round and continued to build on it. Mr. Hussain secured between 1,100 and 1,500 votes in almost all the 23 rounds.

Of the total 108 postal ballots, 97 went to the AIADMK, two to the DMDK and nine were declared invalid.

AIADMK cadre turned euphoric after the third round of counting as Mr. Thondaiman was assured of a substantial lead.

They celebrated the victory by dancing and bursting firecrackers across the town and elsewhere in the district.

Addressing presspersons later, Mr. Thondaiman said that the victory was the outcome of Chief Minister Jayalalithaa's people-oriented schemes and programmes. He would strive to implement welfare measures for the voters of his constituency.

Returning Officer S. Muthumari handed over the election certificate to Mr. Thondaiman.

The seat fell vacant following the death of CPI MLA S. P. Muthukumaran in a road accident. The polling was held on June 12.

Total votes: 1,94,980. Votes polled: 1,43,277

Karthik Thondaiman (AIADMK) – 1,01,998; N. Jahir Hussain (DMDK) – 30,500;

N. Srinivasan (India Jananayaka Katchi) – 4,495;

S. Arivalagan (Makkal Manadu Katchi) – 1,370;

M. Vijayan (Communist party of India) (Marxist Leninist Liberation) - 253

Fifteen independents lost their deposits