Tamil Nadu

Landslide for DMK front in Tamil Nadu urban local body polls

DMK president and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K . Stalin with supporters in Chennai on February 22, 2022. 

DMK president and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K . Stalin with supporters in Chennai on February 22, 2022.  | Photo Credit: RAGU R

The ruling DMK-led Secular Progressive Alliance on Tuesday registered a landslide victory in the urban local body elections in Tamil Nadu, which was held after a gap of over 10 years on February 19. The DMK alliance, comprising the Congress, the Left parties, the MDMK, the VCK, the MMK and other outfits, captured all 21 municipal corporations in the State, and almost all of the municipalities and town panchayats.

The opposition AIADMK camp finished a distant second despite vigorous campaigning by its top leaders O. Panneerselvam and Edappadi K Palaniswami. The party had not fared this bad in local bodies polls since its rout in 1996. In contrast, DMK president and Chief Minister M.K. Stalin had addressed district-wise virtual campaigns from Chennai.

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The DMK front’s good performance was spread across Tamil Nadu but its most significant success came in the western region, which the AIADMK had held on to in the last Assembly elections, nine months ago. The party also wrested the prestigious 200-ward Greater Chennai Corporation Council, which was won by the AIADMK in 2011.

‘Victory for Dravidian model’

Mr. Stalin said the victory was a recognition for the “Dravidian model development” and governance and a certificate for the nine months of the DMK government.

Smaller parties such as the PMK, the Naam Tamilar Katchi, Kamal Haasan’s Makkal Needhi Maiam, Vijayakant’s DMDK and TTV Dhinakaran’s AMMK, which had contested alone, were unable to put up a tough fight.

BJP wins in 308 wards

The BJP’s candidates won in 308 wards across corporations, municipalities and town panchayats of which 200 came from Kanniyakumari where national parties have a dominant presence than the Dravidian outfits.

The DMK alliance secured at least 1,100 wards in all 21 municipal corporations (the DMK 948, the Congress 73, the CPI(M) 24, the MDMK 21, the VCK 16, the CPI 13, and the IUML six), while the AIADMK camp won in 164 wards in municipal corporations. The figures provided by the Tamil Nadu State Election Commission (TNSEC) on Tuesday evening were inclusive of candidates, who were elected unopposed.

As for municipalities, the DMK front won in 2,658 wards (the DMK 2,360, the Congress 151, the CPI(M) 41, the MDMK 34, the VCK 26, the IUML 23, the CPI 19, and the MMK four), while the AIADMK secured 638 posts. In town panchayats, the DMK front won in 4,993 seats (the DMK 4,388, the Congress 368, the CPI(M) 101, the VCK 51, the MDMK 34, the CPI 26, the IUML 12, and the MMK 13), while the AIADMK won in 1,206.

Results for four municipal corporation ward member posts were yet to be declared as of 9 p.m..

From the PMK, five candidates were elected to municipal corporations, 48 to municipalities and 73 to town panchayats. The AMMK managed to secure a majority in Orathanadu Town Panchayat. Apart from winning in three corporation wards, 33 and 66 of its candidates were elected to municipalities and town panchayats respectively.

The DMDK did not win any seat in corporations but secured 12 seats in municipalities and 23 in town panchayats. The SDPI secured one seat in the Coimbatore Municipal Corporation, five and 16 posts in municipalities and town panchayats respectively. As many as 73 independent candidates emerged victorious in corporations.

The TNSEC had announced elections to fill 12,838 posts in 649 urban local bodies, including 21 municipal corporations, 138 municipalities and 490 town panchayats on February 19. A total of 74,416 nominations were received till the last day of filing nominations. While 2,062 nominations were rejected, 14,324 were withdrawn.

A total of 218 candidates were declared elected unopposed.

No candidate filed nomination to contest in one town panchayat ward member post.

Eventually, a total of 57,778 candidates were in the fray contesting for 12,607 posts. Elections for 12 posts were rescinded and polling for six posts in five districts were postponed after candidates had died.

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Printable version | Jul 2, 2022 11:14:14 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/landslide-for-dmk-front-in-tamil-nadu-urban-local-body-polls/article65075114.ece