THOOTHUKUDI: Losing Thoothukudi Lok Sabha to DMK’s Kanimozhi Karunanidhi in the electoral battle need not be a defeat for BJP or its Tamil Nadu president, Dr Tamilisai Soundararajan, who, given a chance to contest in Thoothukudi, will utilise to gain ideological ground for her party in yet another district in south.
As the electioneering is at a high pitch in this coastal constituency, with all the 37 candidates making the round seeking people’s mandate in their favour, the DMK candidate, Kanimozhi has a bright chance for a win, not just because she is the daughter of late M Karunanidhi, the epitome of Dravidian politics but because of her deeds that speak for her in the constituency.
Even before the elections were announced, as Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi allotted around `1.65 crore for various welfare projects in the constituency from her MP local area development fund. Further her works at the Srivenkateswarapuram hamlet near Nazareth under the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) in the constituency too will give her an edge over the other contestants, particularly against the BJP candidate Tamilisai Soundararajan, who was reportedly pushed into the constituency to take on Kanimozhi.
The anti-BJP wave in the state too is expected to give a positive ride for Kanimozhi in Thoothukudi, where issues like the GST and the anti-Sterlite sentiment makes the campaign arduous for Tamilisai. BJP’s ally, the AIADMK too is not so strong as it was when J Jayalalithaa was alive. The splinter group of T,T.V Dhinakaran is likely to play the spoil sport in the Thevar-dominated areas of Srivaikundam and Vallanad that will further weaken the BJP contestant against Kanimozhi.
However, despite all these odds, the BJP camp has not lost its enthusiasm, as according to a BJP functionary, “it may not be a surprise if Kanimozhi wins in Thoothukudi as it is not unexpected.” “Even if we lose the battle to DMK in Thoothukudi, we have reasons to be happy as this election earned us a ground in Thoothukudi constituency,” said the BJP functionary.
Obviously many of the BJP men feel so as they have succeeded in creating a base for Hindu solidarity in Thoothukudi constituency. “This is how they set their foot in Kanyakumari, where the Mandakadu riot gave them a chance to create a Hindu solidarity that was later converted into a strong BJP vote bank,” said Meenakshi Sundaram, a retired teacher....