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Lok Sabha polls in Tamil Nadu a Stalin show all the way

Analysts also said about 11 per cent of the voters are in favour of third alternative to AIADMK and DMK.

IANS|
May 26, 2019, 07.20 AM IST
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Agencies
Stalin
The DMK and Stalin hammered in the anti-Tamil Nadu stance of the BJP-led government.
The 2019 Lok Sabha polls in Tamil Nadu is clearly that of DMK President M.K.Stalin show, given the campaign, alliance strategies that were followed, said political analysts.

They also said about 11 per cent of the voters are in favour of third alternative to AIADMK and DMK.

"Stalin has emerged as a political leader in the state in his own right and also cemented firmly his place as a party leader. He had followed a fine strategy, shifting gear from being anti-Chief Minister K.Palaniswami to anti-Modi and continued that in a sustained manner," Jhon Arokiasamy, political analyst told IANS.

"The second step was stitching up an electoral alliance embracing all partners and finally announcing Congress President Rahul Gandhi as the prime ministerial candidate. During the campaign, leaders of alliance parties were used judiciously depending on the vote base in a constituency," Arokiasamy said.

A sustained campaign against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP over the past couple of years by the opposition against the various projects and other policies moulded the public opinion.

The BJP leaders said the sustained campaign against their party was the main reason for the DMK-led alliance's victory.

According to Arokiasamy, Tamil Nadu poll battle arena was clearly drawn - Prime Minister Narendra Modi vs Rahul Gandhi.

"The minority vote consolidation in favour of DMK-led alliance wouldn't have happened if the Congress was not part of the alliance or Gandhi was not announced as Prime Ministerial candidate which led to DMK's massive victory," Arokiasamy said.

With this victory, Stalin passed the acid test and cemented his position as a leader in his own right.

The DMK-led alliance routed rival the AIADMK-led alliance winning 37 out of 39 Lok Sabha seats that went to the polls on April 18. The Election Commission cancelled polling in Vellore.

The AIADMK alliance got about 30 per cent vote share.

The AIADMK on its own suffered a drastic slide in vote share this time. In 2014, the party on its own won 37 Lok Sabha seats with a vote share of 44 per cent. This plunged to 18.48 per cent now.

The DMK-led front got about 52 per cent vote share in 2019.

The DMK secured 32.76 per cent of votes, up from 23.6 per cent it got in 2014.

The DMK and Stalin hammered in the anti-Tamil Nadu stance of the BJP-led government starting from Hindi imposition, loss of jobs due to demonetisation, employing north Indians in large numbers in railway and postal departments, rise in fuel prices, alleged failure of Modi to keep his 2014 poll promises and water crisis for irrigation and drinking.

"Tamil Nadu has bucked the national trend and voted for Congress in the past. The state voted for Congress in the Lok Sabha polls held after the Emergency. The people voted for Rajiv Gandhi (1989) and now for Rahul Gandhi," political analyst Raveendhran Dhuraiswamy told IANS.

"On his part, Chief Minister Palaniswami retained power winning nine seats in the assembly by-elections. Palaniswami also contained Dhinakaran's influence and has brought some sort of an order within the party," Arokiasamy added.

"In the assembly seats people voted for AIADMK while the same section voted for DMK-led alliance in the Lok Sabha polls," Arokiasamy said.

The by-elections for 22 assembly seats were held owing to disqualification of 18 AIADMK law makers for anti-party activities by Speaker P. Dhanapal and the four vacancies arose due to the deaths and conviction of a member in a legal case.

Arokiasamy said Stalin has emerged as a leader in his own right with this victory after the death of DMK President and former Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi.

Stalin's stature among at the national level must be up by several notches given the massive victory he pulled off in Tamil Nadu while the other opposition parties in their states suffered a severe drubbing at the hands of BJP-led alliance, Arokiasamy said.

Meanwhile the Lok Sabha voting trend also shows about 11 per cent voter of Tamil Nadu have voted in favour of a third alternative.

The percentage would slightly go up if one takes into account the vote share of the independents and NOTA (None of the Above option).

What is interesting is that about 11 per cent of the votes polled was secured by three parties of which two made their debut (Makkal Needhi Maiam-MNM and Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam - AMMK) in the recent Lok Sabha polls.

The Naam Tamilar Katchi (NTK) floated by movie director Seeman has been contesting elections for quite some time.

"There is a sizeable number of voters who want an alternative to AIADMK and DMK," Arokiasamy said.

Arokiasamy said actor-politician Kamal Haasan floated MNM (vote about 3 per cent) has attracted the urban voters positioning the party as the third alternative while NTK (vote share about 3 per cent) attracted good traction among the rural voters with its anti-BJP and Tamil Nationalism stand.

The AMMK party secured about five per cent.

"Haasan's MNM has made a good beginning and Seeman has attracted the rural youth. It is Dhinakaran who has come as a cropper for the hype he had created before the poll," Dhuraiswamy said.

According to Dhuraiswmay, the future of MNM, NTK and AMMK depends on the strategy they would take in the future.

"The MNM may go for alliance in the future while the NTK has announced it will go it alone in the coming elections," Dhuraiswamy said.
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