Lok Sabha Election 2019

Analysis: Sweep for DMK+, in an apparent vote against the BJP in Tamil Nadu

A view of the DMK headquarters, Anna Arivalayam, in Chennai.

A view of the DMK headquarters, Anna Arivalayam, in Chennai.   | Photo Credit: M. Karunakaran

Results seem to have surpassed the expectations of even the Opposition alliance in the State

As lead positions are clear for all the 38 Lok Sabha constituencies in Tamil Nadu, it is apparent that an anti-Modi wave has swept a significant majority of the seats towards the Dravid Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) alliance in the State. In the early afternoon (as of 2 p.m.), the leads stood at 37 in favour of the DMK alliance, and only one in favour of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) alliance.

These results seem to have surpassed the expectations of even the Opposition alliance in the State, which did expect to do well, but not so well. From the counting of postal ballots, the DMK has retained a substantial lead in the constituencies from which not only the party but also its allies have contested.

Substantial margins

In some constituencies, the lead is over 1 lakh votes in favour of the DMK, notably in the constituencies of the Nilgiris (A.Raja, former Union Minister for Information Technology) and Chennai Central (Dayanidhi Maran, former Union IT Minister). In her debut election, the DMK’s K. Kanimozhi (who has served as Rajya Sabha MP) has snatched a lead of over 1 lakh votes over her rival and State BJP president Tamizhisai Soundararajan in Thoothukudi Parliamentary constituency.

In the sole constituency where the DMK+ is not in the lead (by 2 p.m.), the front position has been taken by the AIADMK. In Theni, Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam’s son Ravindranath Kumar has a lead of 10,000 votes over former Union Minister E.V.K.S. Elangovan.

In two constituencies, it remains a neck-to neck battle. In the Chidambaram constituency, the AIADMK’s Chandrasekar and DMK’s ally Thol. Thirumavalavan (who did not stand on the DMK symbol), keep pipping each other’s lead by a few thousand votes. In Dharmapuri, there continues to be a see-saw with former Union Minister Anbumani Ramadoss gaining a lead and slipping alternately. At 2 p.m., he was trailing the DMK candidate by over 1,000 votes.

Trailing candidates

Some of the prominent trailing candidates include: Union Minister of State for Shipping Pon. Radhakrishnan, Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker M. Thambidurai, and AIADMK Parliamentary party leader P. Venugopal. In the western belt, which is perceived to a stronghold of the AIADMK, and also contains Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami’s own constituency, the ruling party and its allies have faced a rout, with the only relief being with its ally PMK’s Anbumani Ramadoss’ chances.

The Left parties are leading in four constituencies, two each for the Communist Party of India (CPI) and Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M). While Su. Venkatesan (Madurai) and P.R. Natarajan (Coimbatore) of the CPI(M) have stepped ahead of their rivals, the CPI’s N. Selvaraj (Nagapattinam) and K. Subbarayan (Tiruppur) are in the lead.

Negligible impact

Vijayakanth’s DMDK (Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam) is trailing in all the four seats it contested as part of the AIADMK alliance, and while Kamal Hassan’s Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM) has performed reasonably well in urban centres, the impact of T.T.V. Dhinakaran’s Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK) seems negligible, this election.

In Puducherry, Congress candidate V. Vaithilingam has steadily been in the lead.

Several rounds of counting do remain. Nevertheless, it is clear that the pattern is an overwhelming mandate against the BJP and its ally in the State, the AIADMK.

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Printable version | May 28, 2020 2:52:20 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/lok-sabha-2019/analysis-sweep-for-dmk-in-an-apparent-vote-against-the-bjp-in-tamil-nadu/article27217984.ece

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