AIADMK to go solo in Puducherry after 39 years, releases list of candidates

After a gap of 39 years, the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) has announced that it would contest the assembly elections in the union territory of Puducherry, slated for May 16, alone, and announced its party candidates for all the 30 assembly constituencies here.
AIADMK to go solo in Puducherry after 39 years, releases list of candidates
(from left) Sitting MLAs A Anbalagan, P Purushothaman, A Baskar, Om Sakthi Segar and L Periyasamy

Puducherry

All five sitting legislators of the party — A Anbalagan, P Purushothaman, A Baskar, Om Sakthi Segar and L Periyasamy — have been renominated without any change in their constituencies. 
Those who recently joined AIADMK after quitting either Congress or ruling AINRC have also been fielded as nominees. For instance, estranged Congress leader and former Health Minister of Puducherry, P Kannan who joined the AIADMK on February 14 is the party candidate from Rajbhavan constituency, situated in the heart of the town. 
VMC Sivakumar, an Independent member representing  Neravy TR  Pattinam, who joined the AIADMK on Sunday, has been fielded as party nominee in the same constituency. Vayyapuri Manikandan, a close confidant of the Puducherry chief Minister N Rangasamy, had quit AINRC and joined AIADMK on Sunday and is the party nominee in Muthialpet constituency. Former legislators Dr MAS Subramanian (BJP) and K Natarajan (AINRC) who joined AIADMK recently are the nominees in Ariyankuppam and Mangalam constituencies, respectively. AINRC founded by Rangasamy in February 2011, after he broke away from Congress had contested the previous assembly polls in alliance with the AIADMK. 
AINRC emerged victorious in 15 out of 17 seats it contested, while AIADMK, its poll ally then, bagged five segments (all from Puducherry region) out of 10 seats. When Rangasamy formed the ministry in May 2011, he, however, ditched AIADMK and after registering the support of the Independent member Sivakumar he formed the government. The alliance between AINRC and AIADMK resurfaced during Rajya Sabha polls and AIADMK nominee N Gokulakrishnan was elected unopposed to the Upper House in September last year. But this arrangement was virtually limited to Rajya Sabha polls only as there had been lack of attempts on the part of AINRC to work out alliance with AIADMK for assembly polls. 
The AIADMK entered into the electoral arena in the union territory for the first time in 1974, when it forged an alliance with the Communist Party and captured power. But the government lasted for only 28 days as the then Chief Minister S Ramaswamy was forced to resign following a budget leak. Subsequently, in the 1977 assembly elections, AIADMK contested alone and won 14 of the 27 constituencies contested and formed the government. 
After 1977, this is the first time the party would contest the assembly elections alone. In the 1980 assembly elections, it forged an alliance with the Janata Party, In 1985, it formed the alliance with the Congress for the first time. The Congress-AIADMK alliance continued for the 1990, 1991 and 1996 elections. In the subsequent elections, the party forged an alliance with the Janata Party, DMK and NR Congress. 
Meanwhile, Jayalalithaa also said the party would contest seven seats in Kerala and released the candidates list in Chennai.

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