Parties come out all guns blazing in TN ahead of rural local body polls Wednesday

Dravidian majors have engaged in heated war of words over promises pending and fulfilled

Published: 06th October 2021 05:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th October 2021 05:39 AM   |  A+A-

Election workers carry ballot boxes ahead of the polls, in Vellore on Tuesday | S Dinesh

Express News Service

CHENNAI: The Dravidian majors have gone full throttle with their campaigns for the rural local body polls in nine districts slated to be held on October 6 (Wednesday) and October 9 (Saturday).

The candidates and functionaries of both the parties have largely centred their talks on the poll promises made by the DMK ahead of the Assembly elections. While the AIADMK campaign pointed out the promises that were not kept by the ruling party, the DMK listed out the number of promises it translated into action.

DMK propaganda secretary T Sabapathy Mohan, reasoning their approach, told TNIE, “We have fulfilled 202 out of the 505 poll promises that we made. That is, 40 per cent of them within four months. Hence, we have to highlight our performance to draw the attention of voters — the beneficiaries of these fulfilled promises.”

He added, “Be it the free bus rides for women passengers; separate agriculture budget; reduction in prices of petrol and Aavin milk, we have to get the acknowledgement from the beneficiaries.” AIADMK spokesperson RM Babu Murugavel said, “The AIADMK had fulfilled all the poll promises made by the party ahead of the Assembly elections in 2011 and 2016. Unlike us, the DMK made unrealistic promises only to grab the votes to capture power. Now, they are using their oratorical skills to tweak the promises they were not able to keep. As the Opposition, we have to expose these failures.”

He added that the AIADMK detailed to the voters what the promises made by the DMK were, and how they have tweaked them. Murugavel also questioned the DMK’s double stand on conducting the local polls in two phases, as the party, during the last two assembly elections and parliamentary elections, had voiced their support for single-phase elections.

What they’re talking about

Both the DMK and the AIADMK have tried to shape the discussion over poll promises in their favour. Here are the talking points

Promises they claim they kept  DMK

  • Free rides for women on government town buses
  • Rs 4,000 monthly assistance for ration cardholders
  • 14 kinds of dry ration for ration cardholders
  • Rs 3 per-litre reduction Aavin milk cost
  • Rs 3 per-litre reduction in petrol price
  • Separate agriculture budget
  • Waived cooperative bank loans of WSHG members
  • Waived primary agriculture cooperative societies’ loans of below five sovereigns 
  • Electricity connections for one lakh farmers
  • Horizontal reservation for govt school students for all vocational courses
  • Establishing a commission for Adi Dravidar and Scheduled Tribes
  • Constructing memorial for Vanniyars who were killed while protesting for reservation
  • Constructing memorial for Dalit icon Iyothidasa Pandit

‘Damage’ they say DMK did AIADMK

  • Stopped Amma scooter subsidy scheme
  • Increased income ceiling for Thalikku Thangam (gold for mangalasuthra) scheme
  • Placed more conditions on Thalikku Thangam scheme
  • Failed to stop NEET, resulting in students dying by suicide
  • Deteriorating law and order situation
  • Didn’t fulfil poll promise of Rs 100 subsidy for LPG cylinders
  • Didn’t reduce price of diesel
  • Didn’t return to the old pension scheme for government employees
  • Didn’t open more direct paddy procurement centres
  • Didn’t waive education loans of students
  • Didn’t provide Rs 1,000 monthly assistance to women family heads
  • Didn’t increase old-age pension to Rs 1,500
  • Didn’t release seven Tamil convicts prisoned in connection with Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination


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