The DMDK on Monday announced the list of candidates who have been selected to fight in the four constituencies allotted to it in the AIADMK-led alliance. The party's deputy general secretary LK Sudhish, who is founder Vijayakantâ€™s brother-in-law has been allotted the Kallakurichi seat, a constituency where he stood and lost from in 2009.
While the DMDK will face the DMK in two seats, their fight in the remaining two is against the Congress. The other candidates that have been roped into the contest are R Azhagarsamy for Virudhunagar, R Mohanraj for Chennai North and Dr V Ilangovan for Tiruchirappally. While Azhagarsamy is a senior leader of the party, Mohanraj was the MLA of Salem North in the 2011-16 Assembly. Ilangovan meanwhile is the party's present Presidium Chairman. These three leaders, however, were not contestants in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections when DMDK was part of the NDA.
In 2009, LK Sudhish polled over one lakh votes in Kallakurichi which was 15.47% of the total number of votes in the constituency. He came third, after the AIADMK and PMK candidates. The DMDK is known to have a strong voter base in the constituency due to its founder Vijayakant's popularity in the region. That added to the fact that the DMDK is now part of the mega alliance that includes the AIADMK and PMK, has made Kallakurichi a safe seat for the DMDK deputy general secretary. He will however be contesting against former Minister Ponmudiâ€™s son D. Gowtham Sigamani from the DMK.
In the 2014 elections in Kalakurichi, the DMK had come second after the AIADMK while the DMDK candidate remained at the third position.
As far as Virudhunagar is concerned the DMDK is likely to fight against Congress' Manicka Tagore, a strong candidate who won the 2009 elections with over three lakh votes. The DMDK managed only over one lakh votes in the same election. Moreover MDMK, which is a part of the DMK alliance, came a close second to the Congress in 2009 and maintained its position in 2014. The AIADMKâ€™s P Radhakrishnan had won the seat in 2014.
In North Chennai, the DMDK will have to face the DMK's Kalanidhi Veerasami, son of former Minister Arcot N Veerasami. The constituency is traditionally a DMK bastion with the party having won 10 Lok Sabha elections there.
In Tiruchirappalli the DMDK has consistently come third in terms of vote share in the 2009 and 2014 Elections. They are likely to face the Congress' EVKS Elangovan, the former Tamil Nadu Chief.