DMK president MK Stalin, who registered his third consecutive win from Kolathur constituency, will soon be sworn in as Chief Minister in a low-profile ceremony considering the pandemic, sources close to the leader said. The counting of votes for polls held on April 6 commenced at 8.30 am with postal ballots. While there were minor hiccups reported in some constituencies including Anna Nagar, Harbour, Viralimalai and Madurai, counting in most constituencies commenced on time.
The DMK alliance, which managed to secure a slender lead even during counting of postal votes, gradually widened the gap. After the first few rounds of counting, the AIADMK front led in around 100 seats in what appeared to be a closed contest between the Dravidian rivals. However, during the course of the day, more seats went in favour of the DMK combine eventually leading to the magic number of 117 by early evening when Stalin began to receive congratulatory messages from national leaders. DMK, which contested in 173 seats, won majority by winning 126 seats on its own, thus surpassing its previous total of 89 seats obtained in the 2006 Assembly election. While the Indian National Congress put up an impressive show winning at least 16 of the seats contested, minor alliance partners VCK and MDMK won four seats each while CPI and CPI(M) obtained 2 seats each. Other minor parties which contested in DMK’s ‘Rising Sun’ symbol also managed to win a seat each.
The AIADMK which contested in 179 constituencies won/led in 65 constituencies while alliance partners PMK obtained 5 seats and BJP obtained 4 seats. Puratchi Bharatham Katchi, one of the alliance partners of AIADMK which contested in ‘two leaves’ symbol also registered a win from Kilvaithinankuppam constituency.
While AIADMK Convenor O Panneerselvam managed to sneak past DMK’s Thangatamil Selvan by a margin of 8,000 votes, AIADMK’s co-convenor Edappadi K Palaniswami thrashed DMK’s T Sambath Kumar by a margin of more than 70,000 votes. In the completely bipolar contest, all other parties including Kamal Hassan’s MNM, Seeman’s NTK and TTV Dhinakaran’s AMMK failed to get a single seat. Kamal Hassan who contested from Coimbatore South was leading over his rival BJP’s Vanathi Srinivasan until the last rounds and lost by just over a thousand votes.
Meanwhile, NTK which contested alone in the polls, increased its vote share significantly to around 5 per cent in the election.
AMMK leader Dhinakaran too put up brave fight against former Information and Publicity Minister Kadambur Raju but managed to finish only second. Vijayakant’s DMDK failed to get even a single seat for the fourth straight election with its vote percentage dipping below 0.5 percent. A total of 4.57 crore voters out of total 6.26 crore electorate cast their votes to elect the 16th assembly taking the total voting percentage to 72.78 percentage.