Tamil Nadu 2016

Two veterans prove their mettle in Dindigul

M:R. Sakkarapani (left) and former MinisterI. Periyasamy (right) coming to the counting centre in Dindigul on Thursday to receive the election certificate.— Photo: G. Karthikeyan  

Having registered another victory in Athoor, former Revenue Minister and sitting MLA I. Periyasamy has once again proved his firm hold over the constituency. He outpaced AIADMK strong man and Minister for Power R. Viswanathan by a margin of 27,147 votes.

After receiving the certificate, Mr. Periyasamy said that love and affection had won in a fiery battle between power of love and power of money in Athoor.

This election was an acid test for both Mr. Viswanathan and Mr. Periyasamy. When Mr. Viswanathan jumped into the fray with all his paraphernalia Mr. Periyasamy used the ‘love and affection’ card to effect, recalling his rapport with Athoor residents. Reddiyarchatram union, which let him down in the 2011 election, too strengthened his hand this time.

It was the toughest election Mr. Periyasamy faced in his political career. His entire family campaigned for him this time. He won the seat by a comfortable margin, though far below the 2011 margin of 53,932 votes. This was the fourth victory for Mr. Periyasamy, who first became MLA in 1989. Another bigwig in the district was Oddanchatram DMK candidate R. Sakkarapani who has retained his seat for the fifth time consecutively. “I am deeply indebted to my voters,” he said.

Mr. Sakkarapani did not struggle as much as Mr. Periyasamy. With a weak AIADMK rival, he did not strain much to register his fifth win in his hometown. But he decided not to take any risk and took all-out efforts to win. The margin between him and AIADMK rival was 65,720 votes, the second biggest in the State. But he had to struggle in 2011 as P. Baalasubramani (AIADMK) gave a stiff fight. His margin at that time was 14, 933 votes.

In 2001, he was the lone DMK candidate to win in Dindigul district. Mr. Periasamy too failed to stand against the anti-incumbency wave in that poll. Mr. Sakkarapani has been winning in Oddanchatram since 1996. Once again, both DMK leaders have established their strength and popularity.

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Printable version | Mar 7, 2021 2:23:27 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/tamilnadu2016/two-veterans-prove-their-mettle-in-dindigul/article8628106.ece

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