Civic reps bargain hard to woo votes for indirect polls

More than 4,000 candidates who won the recent polls to rural local bodies assumed office on Monday and the newly elected members will elect the chairman and vice-chairman of their respective civic bodies through indirect elections on Saturday.
Civic reps bargain hard to woo votes for indirect polls

Chennai

The political parties, particularly the AIADMK and the DMK are now racing against each other to prevent horse-trading. Of the total 27 districts, the Opposition DMK won the maximum vote share in 14 districts and has been campaigning against the ruling AIADMK saying that the outcome of the results is a precursor for the next 2021 Assembly polls. The DMK has recorded 38.47 per cent votes and the ruling AIADMK recorded 32.06 per cent retaining majority vote share in 12district councils.

There were also media reports on independents and rebel councillors in Madurai, Thanjavur, Sivaganga going into a not reachable mode to escalate their demand. “A ward councillor in Madurai is missing after he assumed office,” said an aspiring district panchayat union council chairman admitting that several lakhs are being offered by political parties.

“With the DMK and AIADMK winning an equal number of seats in several districts, horse-trading will be prevalent to elect district panchayat and union council chairman and their deputies. The state government’s initiative of conducting indirect elections to the chairman, vice chairman, mayors and deputy mayors will only fuel horse-trading in the days to come,” opined political analyst K Ayyanathan.

“Anti-defection law applies only for MLAs and MPs and defection has been a common menace in TN politics,” says Sukumar Babu, who has served as a party floor leader in Chennai Corporation council. “What is the need for the government to conduct indirect elections and such indirect polls to mayors and the municipal chairman will only fuel horse-trading,” Sukumar Babu added. There have been hundreds of cases against councillors defecting camps and no legal action can be taken against them. It will be better if there is anti-defection law for councillors, but none of the TN political parties has campaigned against this issue, Sukumar Babu also a two-time former councillor noted.

For the polls held with ballots to elect 5,090 panchayat union councillors, the DMK alliance won 2,346 seats leaving 2,182 seats for the AIADMK alliance, this is a close fight and will ensure further competition between Dravidian majors when the indirect polls are held,” explained political commentator R Mani.

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