Ritesh K Srivastava
With the AIADMK winning 37 out of the 39 Lok Sabha seats it contested in Tamil Nadu, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has surely emerged as a kingmaker and can play a major role in the government formation at the Centre since her party will now be the third biggest party in Parliament after BJP and Congress.
Though the AIADMK chief has so far stayed mum on supporting the Narendra Modi-led NDA government, there are chances of the Tamil Nadu chief eventually extending her crucial support to the BJP government.
The Tamil Nadu CM, who is believed to be a close friend of Narendra Modi, threw an indication in this regard when she congratulated the BJP for its thumping victory in the Lok Sabha polls, the results of which were announced today.
"I wish the new government well. I wish the new Prime Minister well,” Jayalalithaa said. The Chief Minister also congratulated her party workers for their role in AIADMK`s stellar, unprecedented and historic performance in the elections.
Significantly, with this victory in Lok Sabha polls, the AIADMK government also completes three years in office after its landslide victory in the May 2011 assembly elections.
This victory will surely tighten J Jayalalithaa`s grip on Tamil Nadu as its voters has once again reposed faith in her leadership.
The ruling party clocked a vote share of around 44 percent, double that of its nearest rival DMK in the General Elections. As per the Election Commission data, by evenjng, the AIADMK had logged a vote share of 44.2 percent as compared to DMK`s around 22.7 percent.
Following the two parties are BJP (5 percent), DMDK (4.7 percent), Congress (4.5 percent), MDMK (four percent), PMK (3.9 percent), VCK (1.4 percent) and others.
As many as 168,475 voters opted for `none of the above - NOTA` option, which is 1.4 percent of votes polled.
There remains no doubt that the AIADMK has done extremely well and bettered its own expectations. The results are a reflection that voters in Tamil Nadu have given a thumbs-up to her stand on various issues like the Cauvery river water sharing, Mullaperiyar dam dispute with Kerala, attacks on Indian fishermen by Sri Lanka and others.
Whether the AIADMK joins the NDA government or not but Jayalalithaa will certainly be in a position to influence the policies of the new government.
Meanwhile, its arch-rival DMK could not even open its account in any of the 39 seats in Tamil Nadu.. Apart from the decimation of the DMK another important thing of the elections are some what marginal performance of the NDA in the state. Only two of its candidates - Pon Radhakrishnan contesting from the Kanyakumari Lok Sabha constituency and Anbumani Ramadoss of the PMK contesting from Dharmapuri – won in the last lap of counting . This is being read as a huge embarrassment for the DMK.
The main reason behind DMK`s poor show is the infighting between MK Alagiri and MK Stalin - both sons of party president M Karunanidhi. Besides, the party has also not fared well in northern Tamil Nadu where Alagiri has no influence. His influence is only confined to southern parts of the state.
The results also show the people`s anger towards the DMK, which has not espoused the state`s cause as strongly as Jayalalithaa has done. The party`s leading lights like A Raja, Dayanidhi Maran, TR Baalu and others are trailing to their respective AIADMK rivals.
It is an irony for the DMK as it has been in Tamil Nadu`s politics for several decades but could not win even one seat and parties that are just 20 years old in the state are entering Parliament. This is a clear warning and if the DMK does not pull up its socks, it will face the same rout in the 2016 Assembly elections too.