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Dindigul consultative meeting for candidates ends in chaos

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COMMOTION: Election contestants arguing with officials in Dindigul on Monday. PHOTO: G. KARTHIKEYAN.
COMMOTION: Election contestants arguing with officials in Dindigul on Monday. PHOTO: G. KARTHIKEYAN.

Staff Reporter

Contestants for ward councillor posts oppose "favouritism"

DINDIGUL: A consultative meeting meant for candidates and independents contesting for ward councillor posts in Dindigul municipality held here ended in chaos and commotion.

Pandemonium reigned in a private hall as candidates and representatives of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, the Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and the Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam protested "favouritism" shown to the ruling Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam candidates by municipal officials and their "partial" attitude towards other parties.

More than 300 persons, including 230 candidates contesting for 48 ward councillor posts, congregated at the hall to interact with officials on election rules and regulations here on Monday.

The gathering remained silent till the officials explained poll guidelines and regulations. When the officials opened the session for an interaction, the situation turned worse.

At the outset, AIADMK representative S. Jayabal wanted some clarifications on election expenditure. Meanwhile, an MDMK candidate rushed to the dais and charged that the revised voter list was not issued to some candidates in ward nine, three and five.

Suddenly, a group of candidates stormed the dais in a fit of pique and questioned Municipal Commissioner S. Meyyazhagan. But the Commissioner tried to pacify the crowd. Many candidates accused him of supporting the ruling party candidates.

They alleged that DPA candidates have started issuing booth slips as per the new voter list.

"Why did the municipality refuse to give the revised voter list to the Opposition candidates?"

Other Opposition candidates charged that voters were included in bulk in the voter list in several wards discreetly.

The crowd was becoming disorderly as the mike given to candidates was switched off abruptly. The officials' reticence also increased indignation of the candidates.

Having irritated by rant of the candidates, Mr. Meyyazhagan along with the officials left the hall without attending the session.

The crowd ran behind them. But the commissioner and the officials managed to come out of the hall.

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