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AIADMK working overtime to retain Tiruparankundram seat
The ruling AIADMK, which lost the high-profile RK Nagar by-poll last year, is cautious this time and is working overtime to understand the impact of TTV Dhinakaran and MK Alagiri in Madurai’s Tiruparankundram constituency.
The party seniors are working on strategies to ensure that the victory prospects of its candidate are not affected. In an effort to set an example, both party convenor O Panneerselvam and joint convener Edappadi K Palaniswami are putting up a united show so that a large chunk of voters understand that there is no conflict between the power centres in the AIADMK.
Fearing that actor-turned-MLA Karunaas will be a threat for the ruling dispensation, the party is also reaching out to influential caste outfits to ensure that the AIADMK vote bank is intact. In fact, they have organised press conferences in Madurai, where the caste outfits are taking on the Tiruvadanai MLA for his alleged hate speech.
“Both AIADMK and DMK have lost J Jayalalithaa and M Karunanidhi who commanded the vote bank and, in their absence, the parties will be cautious in the Tiruparankundram constituency,” said political analyst Tharaasu Shyam. “However, Alagiri could play the spoilsport for DMK and TTV could eat into AIADMK votes. In my view, Tiruparankundram will be similar to the RK Nagar by-poll and the results would be based on micromanagement of poll work,” he said.
“Dhinakaran, like Palaniswami and Panneerselvam also faces corruption charges and there will be a lot of mudslinging once the by-poll schedule is notified. Caste, cash and field work will play a crucial role in Tiruparankundram,” Shyam noted.
AIADMK organ Namadu Amma on Thursday, in a column, ridiculed Dhinakaran as ‘Mr Tihar’ and mocked the AMMK for putting up posters calling Dhinakaran ‘Fidel Castro of Tamil Nadu’. The mouthpiece also termed the RK Nagar MLA as ‘token prince’ and mocked the AMMK workers for putting up posters comparing TTV with Lee Kwan Yew, the first Prime Minister of Singapore.