Chennai: Parliamentary elections

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The Times of India

Jaya juggernaut sweeps aside DMK, no alternative power yet


Chennai 2009, 2014

AIADMK's dream run in Tamil Nadu has evicted DMK even from its pocket borough of Chennai. J Jayalalithaa's party stormed the six constituencies in and around the city, routing not just its principal rival, but also leaving no space for the BJP alliance or AAP to emerge as an alternative.

For DMK, which dared to field its tainted former ministers, the defeat of Dayanidhi Maran in Chennai Central is as humiliating as that of A Raja in Nilgiris. Wresting Chennai Central, Chennai North and Sriperumbudur, AIADMK has also increased its margin in Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur and Chennai South.

It has been a slow and steady advancement for AIADMK in Chennai and suburbs. In 2009, the AIADMK candidate snatched Chennai South, till then a DMK stronghold. The Modi factor clearly didn't work here as BJP candidate L Ganesan came third, behind DMK's T K S Elangovan. Despite a big influx of new voters and migrants in the city constituencies, AAP has come a cropper, with its candidates losing their deposits.

The latest results show that Chennai is not yet ready for an alternative to the two regional parties. With Congres in a state of progressive degeneration and AAP a virtual nonstarter, neither old memories nor new promises threaten to disrupt the duel of the Dravidians, if at all DMK that has come runner-up in all the city constituencies manages to get its act together the next time.

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