Tiruchy: The DMK-led front has come out with flying colours in both the Lok Sabha and State Assembly bypolls in Central Tamil Nadu in the just concluded elections. They include six parliamentary constituencies of Tiruchirappalli, Karur, Perambalur, Chidambaram (reserve) Nagapattinam (Reserve) and Mayiladuthurai and and Aravakurichi and Tiruvarur Assembly seats.
Significantly, Congress has tasted victory in Tiruchirappalli Lok Sabha constituency after a gap of 28 years, with the party's nominee Su. Thirunavukkarasar bagging the seat by a huge margin of over 4.50 lakh votes, defeating his nearest DMDK rival Dr V Elangovan.
Though it is a common practice to attempt to influence voters with cash, Thirunavukkarasar took pride at a press conference here on Thursday after the results were declared that he had not given a "single rupee" to any voter in the constituency. "My elections too were meagre," he said.
In the DMK-Congress combine, the victory margin of the former TNCC president is the fourth highest in the State. While Dr Elangovan polled 1,61,999 votes, followed by former Tiruchy Mayor, Ms. Sarubala R. Thondaiman of AMMK who polled 1,00,88 votes, V. Vinod of Naam Tamilar Katchi polled 65,286 votes and V. Anandaraja of MNM got 42,134 votes.
Another big win for the Congress in this belt is Ms. Jothimani wresting the Karur Lok Sabha seat from the AIADMK candidate and Lok Sabha deputy speaker, Mr. M Thambidurai by a margin of about 4.20 lakh votes. She is the first woman MP for Congress from Karur and the party itself has regained this west Cauvery delta seat after a gap of 39 years.
Thambidurai's defeat is a lesson to other winning candidates that they should regularly visit their constituencies and have good rapport with voters in attending to people's issues. Ms. Jothimani polled a solid 6,95,697 votes.
While Thambidurai scored 2,75,151 votes followed by Dr Karuppaiaiah of Nam Tamilar Katchi with 38,543 votes, AMMK candidate P.S.N. Thangavel got 31,139 votes, and MNM candidate Dr Hariharan 15,967 votes.
In Perambalur constituency, the IJK founder Parivendhar who contested on the DMK's symbol, defeated his nearest AIADMK rival and former Minister N R Sivapathi with a comfortable margin of 4,03, 518 votes. Soon after receiving the declaration certificate, Mr. Parivendhar told newsmen that he will fulfill his election assurances given to the people of Perambalur.
While N.R. Sivapathi polled 2,80,179 votes followed by Ms. Shanthi of NTK with 53,545 votes and AMMK M. Rajasekaran with 45,591 votes, MNM candidate could not file his papers for the seat as he arrived late.
In Chidambaram (reserve) Lok Sabha constituency, Vidhthalai Chiruthaikal Katchi (VCK) founder Thol. Thirumavalavan, amid ups and downs during the counting, finally won the election for the second time, with a meager margin of 3,219 votes over his nearest AIADMK rival P. Chandrasekar. While Mr.Thirumavalavan polled 5,00, 229 votes, followed by Chandrasekar of AIADMK with 4, 97,010 votes, AMMK candidate A.Elavarasan with 62,308 votes, M. Sivajothi of NTK with 37,471 and T.Ravi of actor Kamal Haasan's MNM with 15,334 votes
In Nagapattinam Lok Sabha (reserve) constituency, the CPI candidate M. Selvaraj won polling 5,22,872 votes to beat his nearest AIADMK rival Saravanan, who scored only 3,11,539 520 votes followed by AMMK candidate Sengodi with 70,307 votes, Ms. Malathi of NTK with 51,448 votes, and Guruvaiah of MNM 14,503 votes..
In Mayiladuthurai constituency, the four-time DMK MLA Ramalingam secured 5,99, 292 votes defeating his nearest AIADMK rival Asaimani who got 3,37,978 votes. The AMMK candidate Senthamilan secured 69,030 votes, Ms.Subhashini of NTK got 41,056 votes and Rifayudeen of MNM scored 17,005 votes.
Assembly Polls: The by-election to the Aravakurichi Assembly was a prestigious contest for the DMK, ruling AIADMK, and the AMMK, as former AIADMK Minister and AMMK's frontline leader V. Senthil Balaji crossed over to the DMK and become its Karur district-in-charge and eventually contested as DMK candidate. Despite heavy odds, Senthil Balaji won the seat with a margin of 38,090 votes, over his nearest AIADMK rival V.V. Senthilnahan who secured 60,064 votes.
P.H. Shakul Hameed of AMMK got 7,271 votes and P.K.Selvam of NTK secured 2,228 votes and S. Mohanraj of MNM got 1,358 votes.
In Tiruvarur Assembly bypoll, necessitated by the demise of DMK president M. Karunanidhi who represented it in the State Assembly, the DMK retained the prestigious seat with the party's district secretary Poondi Kalaivanan defeating his nearest AIADMK rival Jeevanandham by a big margin of 64, 571 votes. Among the other contestants, S. Kamaraj of AMMK polled 18,714 votes, Ms. Vinodhini of NTK got 7,931 votes and Arun Chidambaram of MNM secured 4,067 votes....