Who Won Key Constituencies in Tamil Nadu This 2019 LS Election?
Let us take you through some of the key constituencies in Tamil Nadu and tell you who emerged victorious.
It is a bitter-sweet victory for the DMK which swept Tamil Nadu in the national elections. The party won in 37 of the 38 constituencies and what makes this significant is that this was the first election without veteran leader M Karunanidhi and under the leadership of his son MK Stalin.
The results were in stark contrast to the national numbers, as the DMK-Congress pulled off this wave leaving the AIADMK-BJP alliance with victory in only one seat.
There were a lot of surprises, misses, close chases and fierce battles and the results in most constituencies have been baffling.
Here’s a look at the key constituencies in Tami Nadu, and who won where.
The Jothimani Feat
One of the most remarkable victories this election season was that of Congress’ S Jothimani Sennimalai in Karur. She won against one of the AIADMK’s tallest leaders M Thambidurai. He is a five-time MP who was also the deputy Lok Sabha speaker recently, who had defeated her back in 2014.
Sennimalai won with a massive margin of 4,20,546 votes. She achieved 6,95,697 votes while the AIADMK candidate could get only 2,75,151 votes.
She was an active worker in Indian Youth Congress and as the national coordinator of the Indian Youth Congress.
Shocking Defeat of PMK’s Anbumani Ramadoss
Anbumani Ramadoss was the only MP from Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) and his party was in an alliance with AIADMK and BJP. While many expected this to be a sure-shot as the Vanniyar vote bank in Dharmapuri would choose the former union minister, he was actually defeated by DMK’s DNV Senthilkumar. Ramadoss lost by a margin of over 70,000 votes, with Senthilkumar winning more than 5.74 lakh votes.
Coming third is AMMK’s Palaniappan. Interestingly, Dharmapuri has not re-elected a sitting MP since 1977.
Back in 2014, Anbumani Ramadoss had defeated PS Mohan of the AIADMK with a margin of more than 50,000 votes.
BJP’s First TN MP Ever Faces Massive Defeat
BJP sure made a wave in all of India but their charm couldn’t capture Tamil Nadu. It was only in 2014 that BJP got its first MP from the state. Pon Radhakrishnan had then won in the Kanyakumari constituency, but this time he faced defeat by Congress’ H Vasanthakumar.
While Vasanthakumar won 6,27,235 votes, Radhakrishnan managed to get only half of it with 3,67,302 votes.
Back in 2014, Radhakrishan got 3.72 lakh votes, followed by Vasanthakumar who had received 2.44 lakh votes and AIADMK’s D John Thanakam with 1.76 lakh votes.
Vasanthakumar is the founder and chairman of Vasanth & Co, one of the largest retail home appliance chain and the founder and Managing Director of Tamil channel Vasanth TV.
He was elected as an MLA from Nanguneri constituency in 2006 and 2016.
DMK Kanimozhi Cruises Through to Victory
One of the most crucial fight this election season was in Thoothukudi. DMK leader and Rajya Sabha MP Kanimozhi made a landslide victory against BJP state President Tamilisai Soundararajan. She got 5.6 lakh votes and Soundararajan was way behind with only 2.15 lakh votes.
The constituency has been quite troubled especially since 22 May 2018. It was the day the police opened fire on hundreds of people who were marching towards the Collectorate. These people were protesting against the Sterlite plant for years alleging the factory has polluted the ground water and caused cancer. Things spiralled down after more aggression from the police and government made the people very angry with the ruling leaders.
Sources say that Kanimozhi had lived in Thoothukudi for long, was in constant communication with the people and established trust that helped her win. However, the people’s confidence largely relies on whether she will be able to retain their trust.
Karti Follows in His Father’s Footsteps
It was a high-profile fight in Sivaganga Lok Sabha constituency with BJP H Raja pitted against former Union finance minister P Chidambaram's son Karti Chidambaram. Karti had lost the 2014 parliamentary polls to AIADMK's PR Senthilnathan.
Karti polled 2,58,948 votes, way ahead of Raj who polled only 1,09,622 votes. Third in line was AMMK candidate Therpogi Pandi with 56,716 votes.
Karti had had a problematic start with many in the party opposed to the idea of a man with several corruption charges being given a ticket, said sources. Karti is being investigated in the Aircel-Maxis case for allegedly facilitating the payment of bribes in the transaction and the Enforcement Directorate has accused his company of receiving a bribe to help INX Media escape punitive action.
His father has represented the constituency for record seven terms - 1984, 1989, 1991,1996, 1998, 2004 and 2009. Chidambaram lost only once in 1999 to Sudarsana Natchiappan when he contested on a Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC) ticket.
The Lion Roared Loudest
The fight at Chidambaram was a ‘will he or will he not?’ kind of a situation. VCK chief Thol Thirumavalavan eventually emerged victorious against AIADMK’s Chandrasekar in the Lok Sabha constituency. The margin was wafer thin, with the VCK leader winning by 3,219 votes.
He tweeted after his victory was sealed, saying, “Sanathana powers spent over 100 crores to defeat me, went on a slander campaign against me. In decimating all of it, members of non-Dalit communities too worked very hard and helped me emerge victorious.”
Though Thirumavalavan was way more popular than his AIADMK opponent, the latter put up a real fight. AIADMK, with the aid of its alliance partner PMK, tried to propagate the message to the largely Vanniyar dominated constituency, that the Dalit leader wouldn’t be the right choice. He had earlier won in 1999 and 2009.
The Lone Wolf
Deputy chief minister O Panneerselvam’s son P Ravindranath Kumar is the only MP to be elected from the ruling party AIADMK. He won the battle against the Congress old-timer and grandnephew of Dravidian legend E V R Periyar, EVKS Elangovan.
Ravindranath won over Elangovan with a margin of 76693 votes. The AMMK candidate Thanga Tamilselvan was expected to bank on the party president TTV Dhinakaran’s popularity and the “anti-Modi” sentiments, to eat into the votes of the minority groups and break into the AIADMK vote share. But he performed poorly and clocked less than a lakh votes.
Kumar is the secretary of Puratchi Thalaivi Amma Peravai (Theni unit). Brushing aside allegations of promoting dynasty politics, Kumar had told that he had been working for the AIADMK since the age of 18 and sought a ticket as a dedicated party worker.
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