C. Jaishankar

RAMANATHAPURAM: Even as the political parties yet to start campaign and finalise alliance for the Parliament elections scheduled on May 13 in Tamil Nadu, it is going to be a tough task of the candidates contesting from Ramanathapuram constituency, as they have to cover three districts.

Before the delimitation process, the Assembly constituencies of Paramakudi, Ramanathapuram, Kadaladi, Mudukulathur in Ramanathapuram district, Manamadurai in Sivaganga district and Aruppukottai in Virudhunagar district were attached with Ramanathapuram Parliamentary constituency.

But after the delimitation of the constituencies in the country, the extent of Ramanathapuram Parliamentary constituency has been redrawn. As per the announcement, Assembly constituencies such as Paramakudi, Ramanathapuram and Mudukulathur have been retained in it. Manamadurai is attached with Sivaganga constituency. The newly-created Tiruchuli constituency in Virudhunagar district and Aranthangi segment in Pudukottai district have been attached with Ramanathapuram constituency.

Though it was common to find the extent of areas of Parliamentary constituencies spreading across two or three districts in earlier polls, the concern of the political parties this time is that the attached areas have no connection geographically. While Ramanathapuram and Virudhunagar districts are classified as southern Tamil Nadu, Aranthangi is considered as part of Central Tamil Nadu. The length from Tiruchuli to Aranthangi is around 350 km.

“I have contested in many elections since 1977. The ensuing elections will be tough for me in terms of area coverage. I may have to cover from the border of Tuticorin district up to a border of Thanjavur district,” S. Thirunavukarasar, who is likely to contest from Ramanathapuram as BJP candidate, told The Hindu on Tuesday.

He added that candidates and political parties had to study people’s expectation, problems, caste equation, which might different from one area to another.

There are about 11.30 lakh voters in the constituency. Political parties it will be extremely difficult for them because of large area coverage in different districts.

M.S.K. Bhavani Rajendran (DMK), sitting MP of the constituency, said candidates have to take extra effort to reach the people.