Thursday, April 7, 2011

Tamil Nadu : Too close to call contest in Trichy

Press Trust Of India 
Posted on Apr 06, 2011 at 02:00pm IST

Arch-rivals DMK and AIADMK are locked in an intense fight in this central Tamil Nadu district with the ruling party leaving no stone unturned to repeat its 2006 performance when it bagged seven of the total nine seats.

This district has assumed a 'star' status this election as AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa is contesting from Srirangam, the abode of Sri Ranganathaswamy, on the banks of river Cauvery.

DMK's stakes are also high in this district with ministers K N Nehru and N Selvaraj seeking the mandate from Trichy West and Manachanallur constituencies with both seats seeing a major change in the delimitation process.
Tamil Nadu : Too close to call contest in Trichy
Out of the nine constituencies, DMK is contesting seven and Congress two. In the last elections, DMK won 6 seats and Congress one.

The DMK has been winning both the constituencies in Trichy city since 1996 and the party heavyweights Nehru and Anbil Periyasamy are campaigning hard to retain their seats.

The DMK-Congress alliance is banking on the poll promises and the developmental projects executed in the past five years of M Karunanidhi's rule, while the AIADMK is raking up the 2G spectrum issue and the frequent power cuts in Trichy city and rural areas in the election campaign.

Nehru, the strongman of Trichy who shifted to the city from near-by Lalgudi in the 2006 elections, is seeking votes from people listing his "achievements" in the past five years and the projects he executed during the DMK's tenure.

Though belonging to minority Reddy community, Nehru has a huge following among DMK cadre in the entire district and is banking on the backward Muthuraja and Dalit community votes to retain his seat.

The AIADMK has fielded Mariam Pitchai, who has been a councillor in Trichy Corporation for the past two decades, though he was defeated by Nehru in the last elections too.

Issues that could work against Nehru in this constituency dominated by middle-class people are the frequent power cuts and alleged rowdyism by DMK cadres.

A government doctor, requesting anonymity, said though Nehru has done a lot of good work for the people, the power cuts and other issues can work against him.
"Rowdyism is at its peak in Trichyrapalli. People are very scared so, if they want a change from this they will definitely vote for AIADMK," he said.

It seems to be a cakewalk for Jayalalithaa in Srirangam as it has always been a traditional stronghold of AIADMK since 1977. The constituency had given a lead of 21,000 votes to P Kumar, who won the 2009 Lok Sabha elections.

The Brahmin community in Srirangam may vote overwhelmingly for Jayalalithaa since she belongs to the caste and also that they feel that "her presence as an MLA will give a star status" to the area.

30-year-old N Anand, belonging to Muthuraja community, will take on Jayalalithaa as a DMK nominee. In Manachanallur, Forest Minister N Selvaraj, who shifted from near-by Musiri after the delimitation exercise, is sitting pretty due to caste equations as well as his 'clean' image.


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