CHENNAI: The ruling AIADMK is likely to win sufficient number of Assembly constituencies to retain power in the State. Going by the lead position for the 22 Assembly seats where by-elections were held, AIADMK and DMK shared equally - 11 seats each.
However, in many constituencies, neck to neck race is seen since the counting of votes started earlier in the day. So, the exact number of seats which is likely to be won by the two Dravidian majors may slightly vary at the end of the day.
The current strength in the State Assembly means the ruling AIADMK has an easier challenge needing four seats to reach simple majority.
With a current strength of 114 (including Speaker), AIADMK has to just win four seats and should also win over the few disgruntled MLAs to reach a strength of 118, the majority required in a house of 234.
Since the AIADMK is leading in 11 seats as of 11.30 a.m., position, the government headed by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami is likely to continue in power without much difficulty. The DMK with 88 MLAs of its own and support of allies Congress (8 MLAs) and IUML (1 MLA), will add its strength in the Assembly. Since the total number of DMK-led alliance in the Assembly may go up to 108, the DMK may remain as a strong opposition in the State.
As of now, out of the 114 AIADMK MLAs, three are openly supporting the AIADMK's splinter AMMK till recently. After the Speaker had sent show cause notices to them questioning their leaning towards AMMK leader TTV Dhinakaran, these three MLAs gave differing statements. Besides, the three allies of the AIADMK are in a wavering mind always. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami has to balance these issues in the coming days to successfully run the government.