S. Vijay Kumar
Impressive show in Madurai Central Assembly constituency
MADURAI: The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam on Tuesday retained the Madurai Central Assembly constituency with its candidate, S.S. Ghouse Basha, defeating V.V. Rajan Chellappa of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam by a margin of 31,085 votes.
Amidst tight police security, counting of votes for the by-election began at 8 a.m. After 11 rounds of counting, Returning Officer S. Mookiah declared Mr. Basha as "duly elected to fill the seat."
While Mr. Basha polled 50,994 votes, 7,809 more than what the party secured in the May 2006 Assembly elections, the AIADMK candidate polled 19,909 votes. Desiya Murpoku Dravida Kazhagam candidate M.R. Panneerselvam stood third with 17,394 votes. A total of 19 candidates, including 14 Independents, were in the fray.
Polling for the by-election, which was necessitated following the demise of Hindu Religious and Endowments Minister P.T.R. Palanivel Rajan, was held on October 11. In all the 11 rounds, Mr. Basha established a lead of more than 2,000 votes over the AIADMK candidate.
The DMK functionaries thronged the counting centre Madurai Medical College.