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V Maitreyan, O Panneerselvam's Son Keen to Contest LS Polls After AIADMK Seeks Interest Applications

Many have shown interest in contesting the upcoming elections, but it is the party high command that will take a final call. This comes amid speculation that the AIADMK and the BJP are holding discussions for a pre-poll alliance.

Poornima Murali | CNN-News18

Updated:February 5, 2019, 11:34 PM IST
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V Maitreyan, O Panneerselvam's Son Keen to Contest LS Polls After AIADMK Seeks Interest Applications
File Photo of AIADMK MP V Maitreyan
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Chennai: Soon after the AIADMK issued a notification for the party cadre to file intent of interest application to contest in the Lok Sabha polls for all the 40 constituencies in the state from Feb 4 to Feb 10, many are keen to fight in the elections this time round.

V Maitreyan, Rajya Sabha member, has expressed his wish to contest from either South or Central Chennai constituency.

Speaking to CNN-News18, Maitreyan said: “I am grateful to Amma who had given me the rare distinction of being an RS member for three terms which is unparalleled in our party history. My Rajya Sabha tenure is coming to an end in July. So, one possibility is that I consider requesting high command to allow me to contest. It is up to the party high command to take the decision. I will definitely make a request to the leadership that I be given an opportunity to contest preferably in South Chennai. I will definitely make a pitch. If that is not available, I may request Central Chennai which is a cosmopolitan constituency.”

Earlier after his exclusion from the important committees formed by the party to prepare manifestos and hold deliberations on the alliances and seat-sharing talks, Maitreyan took to Facebook to vent his ire, revealing a possible rift within the party.

In the post, he had also recalled how he had always been a part of the seat sharing committee or the manifesto committee appointed by Jayalalithaa herself.

But it is not just Maitreyan. K Pandiarajan, also known as Ma Foi K Pandiarajan, Minister for Tamil Official Language and Tamil Culture, is also keen to contest from a Chennai Constituency. A source privy to the development said Ma Foi has expressed his desire to contest 2019 elections. The source added that Ma Foi was made the spokesperson of the AIADMK and later contested 2016 elections and was made the State Education Minister by Jayalalithaa herself.

“Jayalalithaa had earlier told Ma Foi that he would make a better Parliamentarian which is why he wants to contest the Lok Sabha elections,” the source said.

Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam’s son P Ravindranath Kumar had filed papers on Monday expressing his interest to contest from Theni - his home constituency. He was appointed as Theni district secretary of Puratchi Thalaivi J Jayalalithaa Peravai in May last year by his father. Ravindrananth has been active in politics since he was a student.

Many have shown interest in contesting the upcoming elections, but it is the party high command that will take a final call.

This comes amid speculation that the AIADMK and the BJP are holding discussions for a pre-poll alliance. The candidates will be chosen only after the alliance and seat-sharing talks are over. Multiple sources from both the AIADMK and the BJP have confirmed that discussions for a possible alliance are underway.

H Raja, who contested from Sivagangai district in 2014, has expressed his interest to contest from South Chennai this time. The BJP top brass will take a final decision after formalising the alliance in Tamil Nadu.
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