Chennai, Feb 1 (BPNS)
AIADMK interim general secretary and former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Edappadi K. Palaniswami (EPS) have announced the candidature of former MLA and senior leader, K.S. Thenarassu as the party candidate for the Erode East by-election. The election is slated to be on February 27.
AIADMK has commenced a silent, door-to-door campaign. AIADMK senior leader and former minister, K.A. Sengottayian who is in charge of the election are planning a door-to-door campaign in the first round to get a feel of the electorate.
The AIADMK is on a sticky wicket as the seat was won by the DMK-led front candidate, E. Thirumahan Everaa of the Congress whose passing away led to the by-election. In the 2021 assembly elections, Thirumahan Everaa of the Congress defeated M. Yuvaraj of the Tamil Manila Congress (TMC) from the AIADMK front by a margin of 8924 votes. Overcoming this vote margin is a major task for the AIADMK and the DMK front has already announced the name of the veteran Congress leader and father of the deceased legislator, EVKS Elangovan as the candidate.
Coupled with the sympathy factor and the performance of the Stalin government, it will be an easy ride for the DMK but the AIADMK has to somehow wrest the seat to be in the reckoning in the political hierarchy of Tamil Nadu.
The BJP is not likely to contest the elections even though there is pressure from party cadres to fight the election alone. The AIADMK, it may be noted is a part of the NDA in Tamil Nadu and hence BJP is likely to support the AIADMK candidate in the election.
Sources in the AIADMK however said that the party had conducted an internal survey in which the AIADMK is neck and neck with the DMK and that the possibilities of winning the seat are there.
Senogttayian, a master tactician for AIADMK, has conducted a detailed study of the voter list and has stated that the party would give a representation to the election commission to remove all those who have shifted their residence from the constituency as well as those who died.
It is to be noted that the election being held at Erode which is in the Kongu belt of Tamil Nadu has made it prestigious for the party supreme leader, Edappady K. Palaniswami (EPS) as it is his turf and he has to win the seat at any cost. Sources in the party told BPNS that Sengottayian has already conducted three rounds of meeting with the party booth unit presidents and that he has chalked out a clear-cut strategy to win the seat.
With the party announcing the candidature of K.S.Thenarasu, the election campaign will now gain momentum and almost all the senior leaders of the party will be camping at East Erode to script a victory to the party candidate.