Actor Udhayanidhi Stalin of DMK races past opponents in Chepauk-Tiruvallikeni

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Actor Udhayanidhi Stalin of DMK races past opponents in Chepauk-Tiruvallikeni
Udhayanidhi StalinTOI
At 5.55 p.m, in the constituency of Chepauk-Tiruvallikeni, DMK’s Udhayanidhi Stalin is leading with a whopping 69% vote share.

Film producer and actor Udhayanidhi Stalin, the son and the legal heir of MK Stalin, who is the present DMK chief has made his debut into elections by contesting from the Chepauk–Tiruvallikeni constituency. The party’s decision to field him from this constituency ensues from the fact that this seat is one of the strong forts of DMK. Udhayanidhi’s key competitor in this seat is AVA Kassali, a PMK candidate.

Talking to the reporters after getting the ticket to contest in this seat, Udhayanidhi Stalin said, “I have been given the ticket to contest from Chennai’s Chepauk-Thiruvallikeni constituency. I thank the leaders who gave me a chance to contest from this seat. I will work hard and hope to win by a huge margin.”

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The brick stunt flashing in the media

Udhayanidhi is a well-known figure from the film industry. Through his strikingly attractive election campaign strategy, he had managed to grab the news headlines during the final phase of election campaign. He flashed in the media for his brick stunt and the virtual bricks he was throwing at the NDA leaders.

During his campaigns in the electorate, he had been carrying a brick with him imprinted with the acronym ‘AIIMS’ telling people that he was in fact carrying the Madurai AIIMS with him. This was a mockery he was using to attack Prime Minister Narendra Modi for not making any progress with the construction of Madurai AIIMS after he announced the project launch in 2019.

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Udhayanidhi in Chepauk–Tiruvallikeni constituency

During the reorganisation of constituencies in 2011, Chepauk took in some segments of the Tiruvallikeni seat and became Chepauk–Tiruvallikeni assembly constituency. Once it was decided to field Udhayanidhi Stalin in the elections, the first choice he opted for was Chepauk–Tiruvallikeni seat. His idea was that the smaller size of the constituency could demand less of his time during the campaign and hence he would find more time for a state-wide campaign. Also, the insider view from this constituency says Udhayanidhi was also targeting the votes of the minority voters in this constituency.

Udhayanidhi’s prospects of winning from the Chepauk–Tiruvallikeni constituency

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Political observers feel the debut game for Udhayanidhi in this constituency will not be a tough one. The majority of the voters in this seat have been favoring the DMK party for so long, an allegiance they had been taught by the former Chief Minister of the state Karunanidhi. The legacy created by his grandfather can come to Udhayanidhi’s aid now.

Chepauk–Tiruvallikeni constituency is located in the heart of Chennai. This constituency represented the DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi thrice between 1996 and 2011. He won all of these elections and became the Chief Minister two times. He banked on this seat heavily till he made a move to Tiruvarur later. J.Anbalagan, a senior party leader of DMK also won from this constituency. Hence the prospects of Karunanidhi’s grandson winning from here is an undisputed conclusion anyone familiar with the political scene in Tamil Nadu can make.

AVA Kassali, the PMK candidate is a lesser known personality in this constituency. Since the AIADMK has pushed aside this seat for its ally PMK, it will not focus much on the electoral campaign here. By choosing a seat that will enable a much safer game, Udhayanidhi has strong prospects of winning from here.

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