Chennai: Five nominees of the ruling AIADMK party on Wednesday filed their nominations for the Rajya Sabha biennial elections from Tamil Nadu scheduled to be held June 27. They filed their paper in presence of party supremo J. Jayalalithaa.
All of them submitted their nominations to presiding officer and assembly secretary A.M.P. Jamaludeen at his chamber at the secretariat around 1.30 pm. Those who filed their papers are V. Maithreyan, incumbent Rajya Sabha member, whose tenure term ends in July, Tiruchirapalli suburban area secretary T. Rathnavel, Nilgris AIADMK district secretary K.R. Arjunan, Dr R. Lakshmanan, Viluppuram north district secretary, and farmer’s wing leader K Thangamuthu from Thanjavur.
After July 24, six seats would be vacated from Tamil Nadu. With its strength of 151 in the 234-member Assembly, the AIADMK can win four Rajya Sabha seats easily and is pinning its hopes on support of smaller allies and dissident DMDK MLAs for the fifth.
The last date for filing of nominations is June 17. Scrutiny will be done on June 18 and the last date for withdrawal is June 20. Election if necessary will be held on June 27 and counting of votes will be on the same day. It may be noted that Jayalalithaa had dropped Saravana Perumal from the list of nominees on Tuesday.
Another DMDK cadre joins 6 dissident MLAs
S. Sasidharan | DC
Crisis in DMDK camp further deepened on Wednesday when businessman MLA ‘Ma Foi’ K. Pandiarajan from the party called on chief minister J. Jayalalithaa joining the brigade of six other dissident DMDK legislators who had earlier met her.
The Virudhunagar MLA, gave the same reason as other rebel MLAs for meeting the CM: to plead for the completion of projects in his constituency. In the meeting that lasted for 20 minutes at the chief minister’s chamber in the afternoon, around 2.30 pm, Pandiarajan her assistance for the developmental works for his constituency. With this meeting, the dissident ranks in the opposition party swelled up to seven, and grapevine has it that the number is likely to increase in the days to come.
Pandiarajan told waiting reporters that he called on CM only to seek assistance for his constituency grappled with various problems. “I sought her assistance for various schemes, and developmental works. She promised that she would help the constituency,” said Pandiarajan, heaping encomiums on Ms Jayalalithaa for her ‘vision document 2023’ which would help the state achieve a numero uno position in the country.
This meeting came as a jolt to the DMDK, whose MLAs’ strength is fast gravitating towards AIADMK while Rajya Sabha polls are around the corner. The principal Opposition party in the legislative DMDK originally had 29 legislators after the 2011 assembly elections when it faced the polls alongside the erstwhile ally AIADMK.
However, rift in the party came to fore when DMDK legislators S. Sunderarajan (Madurai Central), and K. Tamilazhagan (Thittakudi) called on Jayalalithaa October last. After that, five more MLAs including Pandiarajan have met her, raising questions about cohesiveness of the party.
Speaking to DC on the sidelines after the meeting, Pandiarajan told that he does not know to which party he would vote for in the ensuing polls.