Tamil Nadu

Can Anbumani break the Dharmapuri jinx?

Anbumani Ramadoss

Anbumani Ramadoss  

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Parliamentary constituency has never re-elected a candidate since 1977

When the counting of votes is taken up on Thursday for the Lok Sabha election, a question on some people’s minds would be whether Anbumani Ramadoss (PMK), who is hoping to retain the Dharmapuri Parliamentary seat, will break the jinx of the constituency not having re-elected any candidate since 1977.

Dr. Ramadoss’ main rivals are S. Senthilkumar of the DMK and P. Palaniappan of the AMMK. In what the PMK considered a high-stakes contest, the voter turnout in Dharmapuri — 80.49% — was the highest in the State.

Past winners

In the past 11 elections over four decades, the PMK won the seat on four occasions (1998, 1999, 2004 and 2014) while the AIADMK (1984 and 1989), the DMK (1980 and 2009) and the Congress (1977 and 1991) won it two times each. In 1996, the Tamil Maanila Congress (Moopanar) emerged the victor.

A perusal of the results over the years reveals that sitting MPs were either defeated or were not re-nominated by their parties. For instance, M. Thambi Durai, Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker and AIADMK propaganda secretary, was first elected to Parliament from here in 1984. But five years later, the party gave the seat to M.G. Sekhar, forcing Mr. Thambi Durai to shift to Karur. R. Senthil of the PMK and R. Thamaraiselvan of the DMK, who were elected in 2004 and 2009 by comfortable margins, faced defeat in subsequent elections in 2009 and 2014.

There are seven other constituencies in the State that also hold the record for incumbent MPs not getting a second chance. They are Kancheepuram, Arni, Villupuram, Kallakurichi, Namakkal, Theni and Thoothukudi. Except Namakkal, Kancheepuram and Kallakurichi, the others were formed for the first time after the 2008 delimitation exercise.

Kancheepuram was in existence during the 1951-52 and 1957 Lok Sabha polls; Namakkal (1957 and 1962) and Kallakurichi (1967 and 1971). However, Dharmapuri stands on a different footing as these seven constituencies did not have as many elections as it did.

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Printable version | Dec 16, 2019 3:53:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/can-anbumani-break-the-dharmapuri-jinx/article27212023.ece

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