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Urban local body elections to be contested in TN by PMK

Urban local body elections to be contested in TN by PMK

It has been announced that the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK), the political arm of the powerful Vanniyar community, which was a member of AIADMK's coalition in the 2019 general election and 2021 assembly election, will stand alone in the 2022 local elections.

According to the PMK's founder, S. Ramadoss, winning many urban local body seats would propel PMK to central stage in Tamil politics and enable it to bargain with other parties.

While it won some seats in the rural bodies, including gram panchayat seats, the PMK was not elected to any district panchayat, despite walking out of the AIADMK alliance in the 2021 October local body elections.

There is a predominant PMK presence in northern Tamil Nadu, where a majority of its voters are Vanniyars. In a bid to become a major force in Tamil Nadu politics, the party is trying to win the maximum number of seats from this stronghold.

According to PMK sources, in his address to party functionaries and leaders, S Ramadoss stated that the party needs to win more seats to be in a position to bargain in both the 2024 general elections and the 2026 assembly elections.

In the long run, PMK wanted to take over the Chief Minister's post from AIADMK because it doesn't want to play second fiddle to any single party in Tamil Nadu politics and wants to lead a coalition that will elevate it to the centre stage.

IANS quoted R. Padmanabhan, Director of the Socio-Economic Development Foundation in Madurai, as saying:"In politics, one can be ambitious but the ambition must be based on the inherent strength and weakness of a party. PMK cannot fill the void of AIADMK as it is not a pan-Tamil Nadu party and is confined to certain pockets of north Tamil Nadu and that, too, only among the Vanniyar community. The dream is far-fetched."

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