PMK to contest rural body polls alone, to remain in NDA | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

PMK to contest rural body polls alone, to remain in NDA

Sep 16, 2021 12:41 AM IST

On late Tuesday night, PMK chief GK Mani released a statement announcing that they will go alone in the polls to be held on October 6 and October 9. He added that this was being made with approval of PMK founder Dr S Ramadoss and youth wing secretary Anbumani Ramadoss

Chennai: In what appears to be the first crack in the AIADMK-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in Tamil Nadu, the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) president GK Mani has announced to contest next month’s rural local body polls in nine districts alone.

PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss talking to media. (HT PHOTO)
PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss talking to media. (HT PHOTO)

Mani, however, clarified that there were no problems in the alliance and “we are still in the NDA”.

Hindustan Times - your fastest source for breaking news! Read now.

Mani explained that the PMK’s senior leadership and office bearers of the nine districts had a meeting via Zoom on Tuesday to discuss the polls where they decided that they should contest alone. “The poll dates were announced only a day ago and there are only a few days left to file nomination. So, everyone felt that if we go back to discussing with the AIADMK it will get delayed further and there will be confusion over who should contest so it was a singular demand that we contest alone,” said Mani.

On late Tuesday night, Mani released a statement announcing that they will go alone in the polls to be held on October 6 and October 9. He added that this was being made with approval of PMK founder Dr S Ramadoss and youth wing secretary Anbumani Ramadoss.

The districts that will go to the polls include Kanchipuram, Chengalpattu, Villupuram, Kallakurichi, Tiruppattur, Vellore, and Ranipet.

News quickly spread that the PMK had walked out of the alliance and that Ramadoss spoke ill of the AIADMK. “People are scheming and spreading rumours. I want to clarify that ‘doctor ayiah’ (the way the party addresses its founder) hasn’t spoken bad about Edappadi Palaniswami or anyone in the AIADMK.”

It appears that the AIADMK was caught unawares. “We know under what pressure the PMK has taken this stand,” AIADMK spokesperson D Jayakumar told reporters. “The PMK will be the loser going on their own.”

PMK, an influential Vanniyar-caste based party, has a stronghold in seven of the 9 districts where polls are to be held. A PMK leader, on condition of anonymity, said contesting alone will work in their favour. “Local body polls aren’t like the assembly or parliament elections,” the leader said. “The individual matters here and people will vote based on a local person who will get things done for them.”

Elections in these nine districts were not held in 2019 along with the rest of the state due to the bifurcation of old districts and creation of new ones.

The NDA-led by AIADMK in the state with the BJP and the PMK as constituents has been in place since the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

The PMK confirmed its alliance with AIADMK for the assembly elections only at the last minute after the state government rushed through a legislation to provide 10.5% reservation to Vanniyars within the 20% MBC quota in jobs and educational institutions to appease its core vote bank. The PMK won only 5 of the 23 seats it contested in the April 6 assembly election.

After the DMK came to power, the PMK has supported it on a few issues inside the assembly. The PMK voted in favour of resolutions to repeal the CAA and farm laws, while the AIADMK and the BJP had walked out.

Meanwhile, the Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) led by actor-turned-political Vijayakanth also announced that his party will contest the rural polls alone despite being in an alliance with the TTV Dhinakaran led Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK).

Unveiling 'Elections 2024: The Big Picture', a fresh segment in HT's talk show 'The Interview with Kumkum Chadha', where leaders across the political spectrum discuss the upcoming general elections. Watch Now!
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
    author-default-90x90

    Divya Chandrababu is an award-winning political and human rights journalist based in Chennai, India. Divya is presently Assistant Editor of the Hindustan Times where she covers Tamil Nadu & Puducherry. She started her career as a broadcast journalist at NDTV-Hindu where she anchored and wrote prime time news bulletins. Later, she covered politics, development, mental health, child and disability rights for The Times of India. Divya has been a journalism fellow for several programs including the Asia Journalism Fellowship at Singapore and the KAS Media Asia- The Caravan for narrative journalism. Divya has a master's in politics and international studies from the University of Warwick, UK. As an independent journalist Divya has written for Indian and foreign publications on domestic and international affairs.

SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Saturday, February 24, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On