AIADMK seals poll pact with BJP, gives 20 Assembly segments, Kanyakumari LS seat
THE ruling AIADMK has allotted 20 Assembly constituencies and the Kanyakumari Lok Sabha seat to its ally BJP for the April 6 Assembly elections, after several rounds of negotiations. Following up with the release of its first list of six candidates for the polls on Friday, the AIADMK firmed up the electoral agreement with BJP late Friday night. An AIADMK release pledged its full support to the candidates of the BJP in the polls and the pact was signed by O Panneerselvam and K Palaniswami from the ruling party side and BJP’s national General Secretary, C T Ravi and State unit chief L Murugan.
Days ago, the AIADMK concluded seat-sharing with the Pattali Makkal Katchi and allotted it 23 seats. Out of the 234 Assembly seats, the AIADMK is keen to contest from at least 170 seats including 134 it won during the 2016 polls, sources said. The negotiations on seat-sharing, initated in a meeting between BJP top leader Amit Shah and AIADMK’s Palaniswami and Panneerselvam here was taken forward by Ravi, and poll in charge for Tamil Nadu, G Kishan Reddy with the leadership of the State’s ruling party.
The BJP eyed a number of constituencies in the western belt of Tamil Nadu, considered the stronghold of the AIADMK and where the national party is also perceived to have pockets of influence. Shah visited Tamil Nadu and Puducherry recently and addressed public meetings. He is set to visit Kanyakumari on March 7 and hold a road show. Congress party’s H Vasanthakumar who represented the Kanyakumari Lok Sabha MP died due to the coronavirus last year and the constituency fell vacant. Meanwhile, The DMK on Saturday moved forward in its ongoing seat-sharing exercise with allies by giving six seats to MDMK though a deal with the Congress and CPI(M) was elusive, while the ruling AIADMK’s negotiations with DMDK remained inconclusive.