Campaigning ends for Vellore Lok Sabha poll
The campaigning for the August 5 Vellore Lok Sabha elections came to an end on Saturday evening.
Though there are 28 contestants in the fray, the main fight is between the ruling AIADMK's A.C. Shanmugam and DMK's D.M. Kathir Anand.
The NMK led by Seeman has also fielded its candidate with Deepalakshmi in the fray while the Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM), floated by actor-turned politician Kamal Haasan, decided to stay away from the polls.
The election to the seat, originally scheduled for April 18, was postponed after Rs 10 crore cash was seized from DMK leaders in Vellore district. Three months later, this became the central talking point of the AIADMK's campaign targeting the DMK.
The absence of progress in these cases has increased the voters' apathy in the elections as well as the Election Commission (EC).
While rescinding the poll, the EC had said that it was "fully satisfied" that the electoral process in Vellore had been vitiated on account of unlawful activities on behalf of DMK candidate Kathir Anand and some of its workers.
"In the Commission's considered opinion, allowing the current electoral process to conduct the poll in the constituency on April 18, 2019, as scheduled, in such a vitiated atmosphere would have severely jeopardised the conduct of free and fair elections," the EC had said.
The DMK-led front won 37 of the 38 Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu, polling for which was held on April 18.
It will be interesting to see which way the wind blows in Vellore as political pundits say there is no anti-Modi wave this time around as it was when the poll was postponed.
The AIADMK campaign was led by Coordinator and Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam and Joint Coordinator and Chief Minister E.K. Palaniswami.
On the other hand, DMK President M.K. Stalin led the campaign for D.M. Kathir Anand. IANS