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Tamil Nadu

In Assam state, the BJP managed to retain political power in 2021. The polling for the highly anticipated assembly elections in Tamil Nadu was held on 06 April 2021 that witnessed a voter turnout of 71.79 percent. The polling for the 234-member Tamil Nadu assembly was held on April 6 along with three other states -- West Bengal, Kerala and Assam -- and the union territory of Puducherry. Voting took place in a single phase in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry on April 6, while voters in Assam cast their votes in three phases. The fate of the candidates, meanwhile, will be announced on May 2. These polls were the first elections to be held in Tamil Nadu after the deaths of political stalwarts Jayaram Jayalalithaa and M Karunanidhi.

Tamil Nadu is dominated by Dravidian politics, roughly a combination of ethnic-linguistic pride and backward caste assertion, which is the ideological polar opposite of the Hindu nationalism of the BJP. All indications pointed to a Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK)-Congress sweep in these elections, and the BJP would consider itself fortunate to wind up with just a few seats. In 2019, BJP lost every one of the 234 seats it contested there. In the 2021 elections, the party focused on just 20 seats in alliance with the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK). In 2020, the BJP recast its upper-caste dominated state leadership and appointed two Dalits, L. Murugan and V. P. Duraisamy, as president and vice president of BJP’s state unit, respectively, signalling its newfound adaptability.

BJP general secretary Ravi was in-charge for party affairs in Tamil Nadu where it is in an alliance with the ruling All India Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK). “We are surely going to make a big impact in Tamil Nadu. The Vetrivel Yatra that we took out has shaken our opponents,” he said. “Had it not been for the BJP, the DMK would have continued to insult our gods, and that is totally unacceptable. They now know what it is to be fearful of God.”

Temples found a mention in the manifesto for Tamil Nadu, which will hold elections in a single phase on 6 April. The BJP is contesting 20 seats in the state, in alliance with the ruling AIADMK. Termed the ‘Tholainokku Pathram’, the manifesto says the BJP will ensure the administration of Hindu temples is handed over to “a separate board comprising Hindu scholars and saints”. Temple administration is currently controlled by the state government.

BJP stuck to conversion and cow in fight for Tamil land Fighting for a foothold in the Dravidian heartland, the BJP went the whole cow on its Hindutva identity without compunction by promising 23 March 2021 “strict anti-conversion law”, “criminalising religious conversion” and ban on cowslaughter in its manifesto released for the Tamil Nadu assembly polls. The document released by Union minister Nitin Gadkari in Chennai also promised a separate research university to teach ‘Agama’ rituals rooted into the authentic yoga tradition ["agama" literally means "tradition"].

The BJP assured strict laws against religious conversions through force or allurement and an anti-cow slaughter legislation, in addition to a ban on smuggling of cows to other states. “Right to freedom of religion is not the same as forcible religious conversion. Strict anti-conversion laws will be enacted in the state to criminalise religious conversion by force or allurement,” the manifesto said. A law against religious conversion through force or allurement was enacted by late Chief Minister and AIADMK supremo, J Jayalalithaa in 2002 and it was later repealed following stiff opposition to it.

BJP included its pet subjects, including anti-religious conversion and anti-cow slaughter laws in its manifesto and is campaigning heavily on these issues. R.T. Raghavan, the BJP Tamil Nadu spokesperson told IANS: "BJP is sticking to its ideology. We are totally against forced religious conversion and it is totally different from religious freedom. We are against cow slaughter and we have incorporated stringent action against cow slaughter in our manifesto."

Under the head “cow protection”, the party has promised an “anti-cow slaughter act” in Tamil Nadu, in accordance with the Indian Constitution. “Total ban will be imposed on smuggling of cows to Kerala and other states for beef and meat. Gaushalas will be established in various temples to shelter and upkeep cows seized from cattle smugglers (sic),” it states.

Tamilnadu Politics have been controlled by dravidian parties. People have voted for both DMK (Dravida Munetra Kalagam) and AIADMK (All India Anna dravida munnetra kalagam) every alternate tenures. There are no major difference between the parties on their policies and the strategies. Everyone knows that both the parties distribute money for election quite openly. Both these dravidian parties also had most of the media under their control, with their own television channels and newspapers who were doing the marketing and campaigning.

The elections to the panchayat union wards and the district panchayat wards were held in December 2019. The local body elections in Tamil Nadu took place in two phases - on December 27 and 30 and results were release 04 January 2020. This year, four different colours of ballot papers were used instead of the electronic voting machines (EVM). Before counting the votes the ballot papers were being segregated based on their colours.

AIADMK has a strength of 113 minus the Speaker in the 234 member house with 22 vacancies. The simple majority in the full house is 117. DMK is banking on the by-elections to have a shot at capturing power in the state. The party, along with its allies, including Congress, has 97 MLAs against AIADMK's 114 in the 234-member assembly with 22 vacancies. DMK demitted office in 2011, when the late Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa stormed to power with a massive victory, reducing the opposition party to double digit figures in the state assembly.

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and its allies established clear leads in Tamil Nadu local body election results, winning 243 district panchayat wards. The AIADMK alliance include: AIADMK, BJP, Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam or DMDK, Pattali Makkal Katchi or PMK, Thyaga Marumalarchi Kazhagam or TMK. The DMK alliance include: DMK, Congress, CPM, CPI, Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam or MDMK, Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi or VCK, Kongunadu Makkal Desia Katchi or KMDK.

The ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), which bagged 214 seats, were relegated to the second spot by the DMK and its allies. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won seven seats in the Tamil Nadu local body elections. The polls, held after a gap of eight years, is the first local body elections since the demise of the towering Dravidian leaders J Jayalalithaa and M Karunanidhi.

All was not well for the AIADMK party. They were losing more often than winning – they lost the general elections massively and they just about scraped through in the bypolls to retain power. This is further aggravated by the fact they lost in their bastions like Salem. The party should worry that despite performing well – Tamil Nadu was recently adjudged to be the best governed state by the Central Government’s Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances, and the Centre for Good Governance – they were facing anti-incumbency.

Long-delayed and much anticipated, the local body election in Tamil Nadu threw up interesting results - the DMK and its allies won the majority of seats in both the District Panchayat wards and the Union Panchayat wards, while the ruling AIADMK came a close second. The DMK and its allies won 243 District Panchayat wards and bagged 2,099 seats in the Panchayat Union wards while the AIADMK won 214 District Panchayat wards and 1,781 Panchayat Union seats. The BJP managed to win 7 seats in the District Panchayat wards and 85 seats in the panchayat union wards. the CPI won 7 seats in the District Panchayat wards and 62 Panchayat Union ward seats, and CPI(M) got 33 Panchayat Union seats.

The Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly elections to be held in Tamil Nadu on May 2021 for the 234 seats of the Legislative Assembly in the state of Tamil Nadu in India. This will be the first full-state legislative election without J.Jayalalithaa and M.Karunanidhi, as they both died in 2016 and 2018 respectively.

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Page last modified: 06-06-2021 18:15:55 ZULU