With an electorate of around 26.44 lakhs, Sriperumbudur Lok Sabha constituency is one of the largest constituencies in Tamil Nadu.
Like a majority of the seats in the state, this constituency too is poised to witness a four-cornered contest among the DMK, AIADMK, Congress and NDA. Under the delimitation exercise of 2008, it retained only the Sriperumbudur Assembly segment, while the remaining five were transferred to other constituencies. Venerated by Vaishnavites as the birthplace of the famous religious saint and social reformer Ramanuja, the constituency acquired notoriety when former prime minister and Congress president Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated here while campaigning for his party’s candidate Margatham Chandraseker in 1991.
Riding a sympathy wave, the Congress won for the last time from the seat in the polls. Since then, the seat has changed hands between the DMK and AIADMK.
In the 2009 elections, DMK retained the seat for the third consecutive time, when its candidate T R Baalu defeated PMK’s AK Moorthy by 25,036 votes. M Arun Subramaniam of the DMDK came third with 84,530 votes.
However, amid charges of neglecting his constituency, Baalu, a former union minister in the UPA government, decided to test his electoral fortunes from Thanjavur this time. The constituency, comprising six Assembly segments of Maduravoyal, Ambattur, Alandur, Sriperumbudur (Reserved), Pallavaram and Tambaram, will witness a clash mainly among K N Ramachandran (AIADMK), Arul Anbarasu (Congress), S Jagathrakshagan (DMK) and Dr Masilamani (MDMK). Since 2000, Sriperumbudur has seen rapid industrialisation due to its proximity to Chennai and the establishment of special economic zones. The industrial corridor between Sriperumbudur and Oragadam is rapidly developing and, hence, the implementation of the new Avadi-Guduvancheri railway line via Sriperumbudur and Oragadam is eagerly awaited.