DMK bags more panchayat union wards in Thoothukudi

AIADMK leads on district panchayat wards

The DMK-led combine bagged 33 panchayat union wards of the 73 for which results were declared by 8 p.m. on Thursday while the AIADMK and its ally DMDK got only 27 wards.

At 8 p.m., the DMK won 30 panchayat union wards while the AIADMK bagged 26 wards including the unopposed election of its candidate C. Andaldevi of ward 7 in Pudhur union. The AMMK (4 wards), MDMK (3 wards), DMDK (1 ward) and 9 independents too found a place in the list of winners.

Of the 17 district panchayat wards, result for only ward 10 was declared in which AIADMK candidate Selvakumar got elected as he defeated Congress candidate Jesuvadiyan.

While the DMK managed to win majority of panchayat union wards till 8 p.m., the AIADMK candidates were leading in most of the district panchayat wards.

As the counting started at 8 a.m., agents of the candidates were asked to be present at the main entrance of the counting centres from 6 a.m. onwards and they were allowed inside the counting centres only after thorough frisking and they produced their passes issued by the State Election Commission.

Collector Sandeep Nanduri, who visited the counting centres, said 300 officials had been posted in each of the 12 counting centres and 3,600 personnel were involved in the task. Over 1,500 policemen had been deployed in the counting centres.

When declaration of results and issue of winner’s certificate got delayed in the counting centres for a few minutes, agents of candidates affiliated to the DMK and its allies started raising slogans that forced the police to evict them from the counting centres. However, the winners with minimum number of their supporters were allowed to remain there on the condition that they should not create any problem inside the counting halls until they receive the winner’s certificate.

Victory of Mettilpatti village panchayat president in Pudhur union in the district was decided by lot as candidates Jayachandran and Kathirkaaman polled 322 votes each. When the lot went in favour of Mr. Kathirkaaman, an upset Mr. Jayachandran, after leaving the counting centre climbed up a tree and threatened that he would commit suicide by holding the overhead power cable. However, the police pacified him.

Declaration of results for ward 1 of Vilaathikulam union got delayed by 3 hours as the Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam functionaries created ruckus by accusing the officials of hiding 5 ballot boxes after their candidate lost the election and pushed to the third spot. Even after the officials proved that votes polled in all ballot boxes were counted by tallying the round-wise counting and the total number of votes polled, AMMK union secretary Velavan and others raised slogans. They left the spot around 2 p.m. and the result for ward 1 that could have been declared by 11 a.m. was officially announced only at 2 p.m.

After the AIADMK agents snatched the passes of the AMMK agents from them just before the 6th round counting of votes polled in wards 12 and 13 of Kayathar panchayat union at SSTM College in Kovilpatti, the police had to intervene to settle the issue.

Woman candidate J. Petchiammal, 75, of Nadunaalumoolaikinaru near Tiruchendur who was in the battle of ballots for the post of Mela Tiruchendur village panchayat president along with 10 others died of cardiac arrest on Wednesday night. She bagged only 68 votes.

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