CHENNAI: The zeal for building an alternate front in the state seems to have dwindled after the rout of all parties other than the AIADMK and DMK in the 2016 Assembly elections, with parties showing no keenness in contesting the bypolls to three constituencies, Aravakurichi, Thanjavur and Thirupparankundram.
In Assembly elections, the PMK, BJP and PWA entered the race with slogans of alternate politics in Tamil Nadu. The PWA-DMDK alliance polled around 6.3 per cent votes to get the third place, but the PMK which contested alone got 5.3 per cent votes, becoming the third part in terms of vote share. The BJP too managed to garner less than three per cent votes. Compared to the AIADMK and DMK, which shared 80 per cent votes among them, the other fronts finished at a distant third position.
The PMK had announced that it would put up candidates in the three seats does not show the same kind of interest as it did in the Assembly polls, when it was the first to begin a high voltage, high-tech and vigorous campaign. The BJP is spending most of the time, in fending off allegations from various quarters on the Cauvery Management issue and its preparations are at low key.
The PWA seems to be scurrying for cover maintaining that the bypolls would not be held in a fair manner and money power would decide the outcome. Besides, some of the parties are citing the Cauvery issue and claiming that an election contest at this time would generate divisions among Tamils. After the Assembly polls, the PWA leaders asserted that they had checked the rise of casteist and communal forces in the state. But, they seem to be hesitant to enter the electoral battle, even when the PMK and BJP are preparing to contest the bypolls.
DMDK leader Vijayakanth seems to be keen on entering the fray, but the party functionaries are against any such experiment, as they feel it would only expose the weakness of the party. TMC leader G.K. Vasan, who used to drag decisions on election contests showed his reluctance by stating that his party is unlikely to contest. But, partymen feel, Vasan should field a candidate in Thanjavur, which is his native district....