At 3.15 p.m, Kushboo Sundar is trailing behind Dr. Ezhilan Naganathan

At 3.15 p.m, Kushboo Sundar is trailing behind Dr. Ezhilan Naganathan
Business Insider
At 3.15 p.m, Kushboo Sundar is trailing behind Dr. Ezhilan Naganathan who has garnered a whopping 58% of votes counted so far.

Tamil superstar Kushboo is facing elections for the first time after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) gave her a seat to fight from the Thousand Lights constituency. Kushboo sees a tough competition in this seat waged by the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) candidate Dr. Ezhilan Naganathan, who is a medical practitioner cum social activist.

An interesting constituency

Thousand Lights constituency came to the limelight after Ku Ka Selvam, the DMK MLA quit his party for joining the BJP. Since then, political enthusiasts in the state have been actively watching the moves happening in the seat. In a surprise turn of events, the BJP state head decided to field actress Kushboo Sundar from this constituency for the 2021 state assembly elections as she joined the party quitting the Congress.

Kushboo’s debut

Though Kushboo enjoys a star appeal among the masses and has had a long stint in politics, no party was willing to field her in the past during elections. Probably not getting a seat to contest was her prime reason to quit the Congress party. For the first time in the 2021 assembly elections, BJP has bagged the credit of investing in Kushboo’s popularity to check if it would turn the election results in its favour from the Thousand Lights seat.

Dr Ezhilan Naganathan in the election scene

Kushboo’s strong opponent Dr. Naganathan is highly hopeful of winning from this seat. He told reporters, “I started my clinic for the poor here in 2004, and most of my poor patients are also my prospective constituents today. They love seeing their doctor coming home and asking them for votes. They came to my clinic for treatment; now, I’m going to their homes as a candidate, seeking out votes.”

Dr. Naganathan banks on his social activist and sensitive medical practitioner profiles to win the election saying, “I’m confident of winning because of my social activism — during the 2015 floods — and the fact that I treated nearly 2,000 patients during COVID-19.”

Kushboo looks at her prospects of winning from the seat

Kushboo is not new to politics. She has served two stints -- with regional party DMK and the other with the Congress.

Thousand Lights has always been the stronghold of the DMK. One of the biggest setbacks Kushboo faces now is the fact that BJP could never independently realise its political dreams in Tamil Nadu. While answering a reporter’s question based on this statistics, Kushboo said, “Times are changing and mindsets are changing, and the DMK is losing control of its urban bastions.”

She added further, “Five years ago, the AIADMK created history when Jayalalithaa was voted back to power for the first time in several years”, showing us how, J Jayalalithaa, the former chief minister of Tamil Nadu successfully broke the anti-incumbency election sentiments of the voters in 2016 elections.

Kushboo wore a mysterious smile when she remarked, “If the DMK thinks that Thousand Lights is a bastion of theirs, I’d like to invite Mr MK Stalin to contest from here instead of having to go off to Kolathur ten years ago.”

The election scene in Thousand Lights actually sees a one-on-one competition between two debutants. Whoever the election results will favour, it will be the victory of a debutant from this constituency.

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