Captain’s knock - Vijaykant scores 0/40 but helps Chidambaram

May 17th, 2009 - 7:12 pm ICT by IANS  

P. Chidambaram Chennai, May 17 (IANS) Home Minister P. Chidambaram, who barely escaped defeat in the Lok Sabha elections, should thank the DMDK of actor Vijaykant - also known as “Captain” after his character in Tamil film Captain Prabhakaran - which drew a blank in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry but took vital votes away from Chidambaram’s main opponent.
Chidambaram, fighting from Sivaganga, got 334,348 votes and won with a margin of 3,354 votes over his AIADMK rival Raja Kannappan. Of the 775,288 votes polled in Sivaganga, 440,940 votes were cast for Chidambaram, Kannappan got 330,994 and DMDK candidate Barwatha Regina Papa got 60,084. Add the votes of the AIADMK and DMDK candidates, and it’s far higher than what Chidambaram polled.

However, Congress’ Mani Shankar Aiyar who lost his Mayiladuthurai seat by 36,000 votes, will have cause to complain that the DMDK - which got over 44,000 votes in the constituency - spoilt his chances.

“It is true every party has a legitimate right to exist and grow. But DMDK’s growth will be stunted after some time,” political analyst Cho Ramaswamy told IANS.

“It has to align with any one of the major political parties in Tamil Nadu,” he added.

The DMDK contested in all the 39 seats in Tamil Nadu and the lone seat in Puducherry on its own. In Tamil Nadu, it secured over 296,700 votes out of around 30 million votes polled, thereby getting around 10 percent of the vote share.

The party came third in 29 seats out of the 40 it contested.

Though DMDK has increased its vote share marginally over the 8.33 percent it got in the 2006 Tamil Nadu assembly elections, it has fallen far short of its initial expectations.

The party’s Virudhunagar candidate K. Pandiarajan had earlier claimed that DMDK would increase its vote share by at least 12-20 percent in this election as against the eight percent it got in the last assembly elections. That has not happened.

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