MK Stalin | Photo:PTI|file
Chennai: The ruling DMK and its allies notched a huge electoral victory in the just concluded urban civic polls winning over two-thirds of the 12,800 plus ward member posts and bagging all the 21 municipal corporations in Tamil Nadu for which results were declared on Tuesday.
DMK president and Chief Minister M K Stalin said the win is proof of people's endorsement of the 'Dravidian Model' of governance and added that he would slog to uphold the faith reposed by the people on him. He thanked the people for bestowing his party and allies with victory.
A significant aspect of the poll result is the DMK wresting the western region from arch rival AIADMK. On victory in this region, which includes Coimbatore among others, Stalin recalled his pledge made after 2021 Assembly election win to work for all sections of people and regions including for those who have not voted for the DMK.
Such complete dedication to ensure people's welfare has led to the DMK capturing even the western 'Kongu' region, considered a fortress of the AIADMK, the Chief Minister said.
The DMK has won a majority in all the 21 municipal corporations including the Greater Chennai Corporation and also came out victorious in most of the 138 municipalities and 490 town panchayats.
The ruling party has won 946 wards in corporations, 2,360 in municipalities and 4,388 in town panchayats which includes local bodies in the home turf of AIADMK leaders including former Chief Ministers K Palaniswami (Edappadi, Salem district) and O Panneerselvam (Periyakulam, Theni district).
The main opposition AIADMK which came a distant second winning over 2,000 ward member posts thanked voters who chose the party and said it would continue in people's work with full commitment.
AIADMK Coordinator O Panneerselvam said the party has bagged great victories following such poll defeats.
'Dharma' would win eventually and evidencing it, a democratic opportunity shall ensure that people's true state of mind, aspirations are reflected.
"On that day, people's power will win. AIADMK will win again as per people's wishes. This will happen for sure," Panneerselvam said in a statement.
Actor Kamal Haasan-led Makkal Needhi Maiam drew a blank, failing to win any seats in municipal corporations, municipalities or town panchayats.
The BJP which fought the polls alone, won 22 seats in municipal corporations, 56 in municipalities and 230 in town panchayats.
However, it could not win a majority on its own in any local body.
The saffron party's victory though relatively marginal is noteworthy. It has outperformed regional outfits-- the Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam, PMK, Naam Tamizhar Katchi, and the Vijayakanth-led Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK).
Its vigorous campaign was unmistakable despite being targeted by a host of parties and outfits including the ruling DMK on many issues including the NEET. The BJP's victory also covers many regions of the state and it is scattered all across Tamil Nadu.
The big win in the urban polls is the latest in the DMK's winning streak that began with the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Soon, it edged past the AIADMK in the 2019 December rural civic polls, won last year's Assembly election and the recent local body polls in 9 reconstituted districts.
The Pattali Makkal Katchi won 73 wards in town panchayats, 48 in municipalities and 5 in corporations and the party said it is a 'honourable victory.' The PMK blamed use of money power and repressive measures. Filmmaker turned politician Seeman-led Naam Tamizhar Katchi bagged 6 seats in town panchayats.
The TTV Dhinakaran-led Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam won 3 corporation wards, 33 in municipalities and 66 in town panchayats.
The DMDK has won 12 seats in municipalities and 23 in town panchayats.
Among the DMK allies, the Congress won 73 corporation seats, 151 municipal wards and 368 town panchayat seats. Similarly, other allies including the Left parties, the Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi, the Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi and Indiya Jananayaga Katchi have also won, pushing the DMK front's tally beyond the two-thirds mark.
Indirect elections would be held soon to pick Mayors for corporations, chairpersons for municipalities and town panchayats.
As many as 57,778 candidates contested for 12,607 posts of ward members in 648 urban local bodies. Polls were announced last month by the TN State Election Commission for a total of 12,838 ward member posts in 649 urban civic bodies.
The 649 urban local bodies are 21 municipal corporations, 138 municipalities and 490 town panchayats. Subsequently, polls for all the 12 wards in Kadambur town panchayat in Thoothukudi district were cancelled for violations.
For a town panchayat ward --Kanadukathan-- in Sivaganga district, no nominations were filed.
In total, 218 candidates were elected unopposed.