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Thursday, March 21, 2019

17th Lok Sabha Elections ~ Vote without fail .. some trivia !


Have seen him do some ‘adiyaal’ roles and his role as pickpocket in a Vadivelu as bus conductor comedy   was hilarious.  Saw a tweet from our CM Mr Edappadi on his joining his party .. .. it is election time and you get to see lot of actors and actresses joining the bandwagon !  ~ and everyone who has acted in a couple of films perhaps come with a CM ambition ..  when will we have an IITian like the suave Mahohar Parikkar !

The 2019 Indian general election is scheduled to be held in 7 phases from 11 April 2019 to 19 May 2019 to constitute the 17th Lok Sabha.  Legislative Assembly elections in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim will be held simultaneously with the general election.

Life has moved a long way  to EVMs from the ballots – the struggle to punch where ? how to fold and how to put them inside the box ? – is someone watching trouble  - Imagine going through a booklet of about 50 pages inside the polling booth to exercise your right to vote. Scary, Isn’t it? That is exactly what happened in 1996 when 480 candidates contested from Nalgonda Lok Sabha constituency in Andhra Pradesh (Now Telangana). This is the highest number of candidates that ever contested a Lok Sabha election from a single constituency.  The top honour in an Assembly election goes to Modakurichi in Tamilnadu. This also happened in the 1996 elections to the Tamil Nadu Assembly. A whopping 1033 candidates contested from Modakurichi. The election to this constituency had to be postponed by a month since the ballot papers (rather ballot books) were not ready in time. The polling time also had to be increased by two hours. Except three (3), rest of 1030 candidates forfeited their deposit. Not just that :  88 candidates did not get a single vote (even the candidate did not vote for himself) & 158 candidates got ONE vote each.  Way back in 1980s, I had worked extensively for PT Srinivasan, an independent candidate in Triplicane Assembly constituency ~ and the process was quite extracting and interesting !

Ending the suspense over the candidature for Nizamabad MP seat, Congress high command has finalised former MP Madhu Goud Yashki as its nominee. The decision of the grand old party has boosted the morale of the Congress and reportedly, he may give a tough competition to his political rivals in the fray.  NRI turned politician Mr Yashki won as Nizamabad MP in 2004 and 2009 elections, but had lost in 2014 elections against TRS candidate Ms Kalvakuntla Kavitha.

Back home, the opposition, DMK released its list of candidates for 20 seats in Tamil Nadu on Sunday, earmarking four for children of leaders and two for women in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. MK Stalin's sister, MK Kanimozhi, is contesting with her Rajya Sabha term ending in July.  Ironically, the party has allotted just 10% of its total seats for women although it champions the passage of the Women's Reservation Bill, which aims to earmark 33% seats for them.  The children of former DMK leaders who will be contesting on a DMK ticket this time are senior leader Durai Murugan's son Kadir Anand from Vellore; K Ponmudi's son Dr Gautham from Kallakurichi; Arcot Veerasamy's son Kalanidhi; and late leader Thangapandian's daughter Sumathi alias Tamilachi Thangapandian from South Chennai. DMK has not left out its former Union ministers from the list. The party allotted Sriperumpudur to TR Baalu, Central Chennai to Dayanidhi Maran, the Nilgiris to A Raja and Arakkonam to S Jagathrakshakan.

                     It is an epic dumbing down of a democratic exercise called the election, in Mandya. Two film stars with absolutely no political experience, no known adherence to any political ideology and no record of social service are presenting themselves as choices before the electorate in this Lok Sabha constituency in Karnataka. One's claim to fame is that she is the widow of a filmstar-politician and the other is the son of the incumbent chief minister. In this farce, Sumalatha, a senior multi-lingual actress herself, is contesting as an independent after being shunned by the Janata Dal (Secular)-Congress alliance which has put up Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy's actor son Nikhil Gowda as its candidate. Sumalatha seeks to cash in on the sympathy that has been generated after the death of her husband Ambareesh, a hugely popular filmstar from Mandya district. Nikhil is just a couple of movies old neither of which set Sandalwood, aka Kannada film industry, on fire. He is the latest in a long list of HD Deve Gowda's family members who have taken to politics. The former prime minister, soon to turn 87, wants to have another go in next month's elections. His one son (HD Kumaraswamy) is the chief minister and another (HD Revanna) a state cabinet minister. The chief minister's wife is an MLA while Revanna's wife is a Zilla Parishad president. And like Nikhil, Revanna's son Prajwal is contesting from the Hassan Lok Sabha constituency.

~  at Nizamabad, it is reported that about 1,000 farmers are allegedly planning to file nominations against  K Chandrasekhar Rao's daughter Kavitha, to protest the alleged failure of the ruling TRS to ensure minimum support price for turmeric and red jowar (sorghum) produce. About 40 nomination forms were taken by various individuals, including farmers on Monday, the first day of filing nominations, official sources said. Turmeric and red jowar farmers in Nizamabad and Jagtial districts in Telangana have been agitating for higher MSP for the last three weeks. The nomination fee for each contesting candidate for Lok Sabha is Rs.25,000.

Of course, we are set  to see lot more interesting things in the days to come ~ whatever it is – never fail to vote – Ensure that you exercise your franchise ! vote for the right candidate.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
21st Mar 2o19.


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