AMMK leader TTV Dhinakaran fights it out fiercely with AIADMK’s Kadambar Raju

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AMMK leader TTV Dhinakaran fights it out fiercely with AIADMK’s Kadambar Raju
BCCL
At 5.30 p.m, TTV Dhinakaran of AMMK was trailing marginally by 1068 votes behind AIADMK’s Kadambar Raju.

TTV Dhinakaran is one of the key leaders in the state facing the 2021 state assembly elections. He is fighting a tough battle against the AIADMK’s Kadambur Raju, and DMK alliance’s CPM candidate K Srinivasan. This created a triangular contest for the Kovilpatti seat.

Dhinakaran in active politics

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TTV Dhinakaran is the nephew of VK Sasikala and the founder of AMMK (Amma Makkal Munettra Kazhagam). Dinakaran is an incumbent MLA from RK Nagar in Chennai. After AIADMK ousted him along with VK Sasikala following her conviction in a corruption case, TTV Dhinakaran launched his own party under the name AMMK. Failing the widespread anticipations about her re-entry into politics following her release from the prison, VK Sasikala announced her decision to stay away from politics. The resulting scenario found Dhinakaran all alone to fight for his fate in the political platform.

Dhinakaran and RK Nagar constituency

After the AIADMK faced a big setback following the demise of its General Secretary J.Jayalalitha in 2017, Dhinakaran bagged a stunning victory from RK Nagar by-poll, which Jayalalithaa had represented earlier. In this election, AIADMK lost miserably to DMK losing its deposit and facing one of the worst humiliations. Nevertheless, this victory has not been able to woo TTV Dhinakaran once again to face the 2021 elections by fielding from this constituency. Political viewers feel Dhinakaran’s decision to fight from the Kovilpatti constituency ensues from his inclination to bank on the sizeable Thevar community in the constituency which could support him.

The election scene in Kovilpatti

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A lot of voters in the constituency seem to share displeasure with AIADMK’s Kadambur Raju. During the last elections, he won from here with a thin margin of 428 votes.

In the 2019 local body elections, AMMK bagged the union chairman post in Kayathar by winning from 10 wards. AMMK also won from minister Kadambur Raju’s own village called Chidambarapuram. AMMK’s south zone secretary Manikkaraja took charge as the chairman of Kayathar. Manikkaraja hails from a rich landlord family that has been enjoying close bonds with the Sasikala family since long. A number of district secretaries of the AMMK party in Tamil Nadu’s south districts are under his control.

Manikkaraja’s role in Dhinakaran’s decision to fight from Kovilpatti

Earlier, TTV Dhinakaran wanted to contest from Usilampatti constituency. It was Manikkaraja who reminded him that the people of this constituency are not so happy with Kadambur Raju and he could win last time from here only with a very thin margin. The size of the Mukkulathor population here is 23 percent. Manikkavelu assured Dhinakaran that he could force not less than 50,000 among the 65,000 voters in Kayathar union to extend their support in Dhinakaran’s favour.
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Winning prospects for Dhinakaran from Kovilpatti

One of the downsides Dhinakaran faces here is that the people of other communities see him as the representative of Mukkulathor. MDMK general secretary Vaiko enjoys a strong reputation in this constituency. It is possible that Srinivasan can command a sizeable Naicker community vote. So, Dhinakaran can hope to win from here only if he could have attracted the votes of other communities besides those of Mukkulathor.


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