Chennai: Nanguneri seat falls vacant as MLA resigns

Vasantha Kumar gives up his Assembly seat.

Chennai: Congress senior H. Vasantha Kumar, who got elected as MP from Kanyakumari Lok Sabha constituency in the April 18 Lok Sabha elections, has given up his Nanguneri Assembly constituency from where he won twice, thus necessitating a by-election in the seat.

While he exuded confidence that his party high command would field a Congress candidate in Nanguneri when the by-poll is announced, TNCC chief K. S. Alagiri said a call on fielding its candidate would be taken after consulting ally DMK.

His resignation as legislator has been submitted to the Tamil Nadu Assembly Speaker P. Dhanapal who "wished him well" as Lok Sabha member, Vasantha Kumar said and claimed since the last eight years he had nurtured his Nanguneri constituency. "I had facilitated the introduction of a bus service in un-served area besides ensuring de-silting of 51 tanks. I had worked hard to improve the quality of life of the people in the constituency," Mr. Vasantha Kumar told reporters here on Wednesday.

Earlier, he called on Mr. Dhanapal and tendered his resignation and it was accepted effective from today, Assembly Secretary K. Srinivasan said in a release here.

With Vasantha Kumar's resignation, the strength of the Congress (in the 234-member House) has come down to seven from eight. By-election to the constituency would be announced in due course by the Election Commission.

The newly elected MP said DMK would be persuaded to allocate the Nanguneri constituency again to his party in the by-poll.

The confusion in the Congress stems from the poll pact which the party entered with the DMK for the 2019 Lok Sabha election. Like the ruling AIADMK, the DMK had apportioned Lok Sabha seats to allies but retained all the 22 Assembly constituencies for which the by-election was held on April 18 and May 19. While the DMK won 13 seats, the AIADMK had won 9. Hence, Alagiri's averment that DMK should be consulted before deciding on contesting from the seat assumes significance.

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