CHENNAI: The Chief Minister and AIADMK general secretary J Jayalalithaa on Tuesday won the by-election to the RK Nagar Assembly constituency by a margin of 1,50,722 votes.
This is seventh consecutive victory for the ruling AIADMK in the by-elections held since May 2011.
In the past, by-elections were held for Tiruchy West, Sankarankovil (SC), Pudukkottai, Yercaud (ST), Alandur and Srirangam constituencies.
The AIADMK won all of them.
The margin with which the AIADMK candidates won these by-polls has been on an upward trend, except for the Alandur by-election.
Here are the margins in the six by-elections: Tiruchy West (14,684), Sankarankovil (68,757), Pudukkottai (71,498), Yercaud (78,116), Alandur (18,708) and Srirangam (96,516).
With this victory, the strength of the AIADMK will go up again to 152 in the State Assembly.
The strength of the other parties in the House is: DMDK (28), DMK (23), CPM (10), CPI (8), Congress (5), PMK (3), MMK (2), Puthiya Thamizhagam (2), AIFB (1).
The AIADMK supremo had an unassailable lead even before the first round of counting — i.e. from the counting of postal votes.
The results that followed as time went by floored all other candidates.
Her tally was increasing in each of the 17 rounds.
AIADMK workers were on cloud nine as the margin of Jayalalithaa went up each time and celebrated the moment by distributing sweets and bursting crackers at her Poes Garden residence.
There were celebrations even at the party headquarters on Lloyds Road here.
Former AIADMK MLA P Vetrivel, who is the Polling Agent of Jayalalithaa, received the certificate of election from Returning Officer Sowrirajan around 2.15 pm.
Almost all opposition parties boycotted the by-election.
The Left parties put up CPI leader C Mahendran as their common candidate.
Traffic Ramaswamy made unfruitful attempts to get the support of the opposition parties and met DMK president M Karunanidhi, DMDK founder Vijayakant and others.
Though polling was peaceful except for some stray incidents, the Election Commission ordered repoll in booth 181 in which 85.54 per cent of voters exercised their franchise.
Meanwhile, Governor K Rosaiah and Union Minister of State for Transport and Highways Pon Randhakrishnan greeted Jayalalalithaa on her victory.
The Governor spoke to the Chief Minister over phone and congratulated her for the landslide victory and she thanked him for the greetings.
Radhakrishnan conveyed his greetings through a message sent to Jayalalithaa.