Five-Cornered Contest in Tirunelveli
Tirunelveli Lok Sabha is facing a five-cornered contest among the AIADMK, DMK, DMDK, Congress and AAP candidates. Before delimitation, Tirunelveli Lok Sabha comprised Vilathikulam, Ottapidaram, Tirunelveli, Palayamkottai, Srivaikundam and Thoothukudi.
After delimitation, from the 2009 general election, Tirunelveli Lok Sabha constituency consists of Tirunelveli, Palayamkottai, Alangulam, Ambasamduram, Nanguneri and Radhapuram assembly segments.
Of the six assembly segments, AIADMK and its then allies won in five constituencies, while DMK won in Palayamkottai segment alone in the 2011 election. AIADMK wrested Tirunelveli, Alangulam, Ambasamudram segments and its ally AISMK in Nanguneri.
In the previous 2009 Lok Sabha election, Congress candidate S Ramasubbu defeated AIADMK candidate K Annamalai by a margin of 21,303 votes. While Congress candidate had polled 2,74,932 votes, the AIADMK candidate garnered 2,53,629 votes. DMDK came third with 94562 votes.
Now, a total of 13,84,212 voters are in Tirunelveli Lok Sabha constituency. Of them, men voters are 6,88,124, women voters 6,96,078 and others 10. The candidates including KRP Prabaharan (AIADMK), C Devadasa Sundaram (DMK), Ramasubbu (Congress) MP Jesuraj (AAP), and a DMDK candidate are in the fray.
Native of Keelapavoor at Alangualm taluk, AIADMK candidate KRP Prabaharan (35) is an advocate. He is the son of the party’s former Kelapavorr panchayat union secretary KR Pauldurai.
DMK candidate C Devadasa Sundaram (73) is the native of Pungampatti village, but residing in Chennai. He is the former PWD engineer. The sitting MP S Ramasubbu (64) is the Congress candidate. A former bank official, he was elected to Assembly from Alangulam constituency in 1989 and 1991. AAP candidate MP Jesuraj (40), who was ordained as Catholic priest in 2000, is one of the PMANE leaders, struggling against Koodankulam nuclear plant. DMDK has not yet announced its candidate till Friday evening.
Though AIADMK has contested in the constituency 10 times, the party tasted victory in 1977, 1984, 1989, 1991, 1998 and 1999. The party was defeated in 1980, 1996, 2004 and the previous 2009 general election.
DMK contested 8 times, the party won only two times in 1980 and 1996. Congress captured the constituency five times including 1952, 1957, 1962, 2004 and 2009. Swatantra Party won in 1967 and CPI in 1971.
The major issues included interlinking of Thamirabarani-Nambiyar and Karumeniyar rivers project, employment generation, non development of Nanguneri SEZ park, Gangaikondan IT Park, polluting Thamirabarani river, Koodankulam nuclear plant and non allotment of funds to railway projects.
Social Democratic Party of India has also fielded its candidate VMS Mohamed Mubarak (35). Native of Melapalayam, he is the party state general secretary.