Tiruchirapalli: Arch-rivals DMK and AIADMK
are locked in an intense fight in this central Tamil Nadu
district with the ruling party leaving no stone unturned to
repeat its 2006 performance when it bagged seven of the total
This district has assumed a `star` status this
election as AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa is contesting from
Srirangam, the abode of Sri Ranganathaswamy, on the banks of
DMK`s stakes are also high in this district with
ministers K N Nehru and N Selvaraj seeking the mandate from
Tiruchi West and Manachanallur constituencies with both seats
seeing a major change in the delimitation process.
Out of the nine constituencies, DMK is contesting
seven and Congress two. In the last elections, DMK won six seats
and Congress one.
The DMK has been winning both the constituencies in
Tiruchi city since 1996 and the party heavyweights Nehru and
Anbil Periyasamy are campaigning hard to retain their seats.
The DMK-Congress alliance is banking on the poll
promises and the developmental projects executed in the past
five years of M Karunanidhi`s rule, while the AIADMK is raking
up the 2G spectrum issue and the frequent power cuts in
Tiruchi city and rural areas in the election campaign.
Nehru, the strongman of Tiruchi who shifted to the
city from near-by Lalgudi in the 2006 elections, is seeking
votes from people listing his "achievements" in the past five
years and the projects he executed during the DMK`s tenure.
Though belonging to minority Reddy community, Nehru
has a huge following among DMK cadre in the entire district
and is banking on the backward Muthuraja and Dalit community
votes to retain his seat.
The AIADMK has fielded Mariam Pitchai, who has been a
councillor in Tiruchi Corporation for the past two decades,
though he was defeated by Nehru in the last elections too.
Issues that could work against Nehru in this
constituency dominated by middle-class people are the frequent
power cuts and alleged rowdyism by DMK cadres.