Monday, May 14, 2001,  Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

AIADMK, Cong, Left Front back in power
Jaya rides victory crest
Tribune News Service and agencies

Final party position

No of seats:


Result declared


AIADMK front
















Ind (Front backed)




DMK Front














New Delhi, May 13
The Congress-led United Democratic Front today made a spectacular comeback in Kerala, the AIADMK staged a triumphal return to power in Tamil Nadu and the Left Front extended its lease on the Writers’ Building in Kolkata by another term.

As counting of votes in the May 10 assembly elections in four states and a Union Territory neared completion today, it became clear that the race in Assam was a neck-and-neck affair, while the Pondicherry electorate had delivered a fractured mandate.

In Kerala, the UDF won a two-thirds majority in the 140-member assembly, bagging 99 seats against just 40 for the ruling Left Democratic Front, riding an anti-incumbency tidal wave. It was an ignominious exit for Kerala’s longest-serving Chief Minister E.K. Nayanar, who promptly submitted the resignation of his ministry to Governor Sukhdev Singh Kang.

In Tamil Nadu, Ms J. Jayalalitha’s All-India Anna DMK, which led the Secular Front, was poised to form a government on its own after today’s landslide win.

With Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi conceding defeat, AIADMK supremo Jayalalitha announced that she would meet Governor Fatima Beevi to discuss ministry formation after the AIADMK Legislature Party elected its leader tomorrow.

The AIADMK in an electoral landslide continued its victory march and was close to securing an absolute majority having won 99 of the 176 seats, results of which were declared tonight. With the party having established commanding leads in 30 more constituencies it would get well past the magic figure of 118 in the 234 member-Assembly. The DMK received a drubbing with the party securing just 23 seats and its allies the BJP three and MGR ADMK one.

Mr Karunanidhi tendered the resignation of his Cabinet this evening. Ms Jayalalitha, who was debarred from contesting the election after being convicted in a corruption case, said she accepted the verdict of the people as the “verdict of God.”

She also made it clear that she was for cordial relationship with the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre.

CHENNAI: Riding a sympathy wave, the AIADMK tonight won absolute majority in the 234-member Tamil Nadu Assembly winning 132 seats of the 140 seats it had contested in a stunning performance that eclipsed its arch rival DMK.

The AIADMK legislature party will meet here tomorrow to elect Jayalalitha as its leader, paving the way for her staking claim to form the new government.

Jayalalitha, who has been debarred from contesting elections because of her conviction in two corruption cases, told reporters that she would be the Chief Minister and her party would not share power with allies.

The AIADMK-led front had won 194 seats of the 233 seats for which results have been announced.

The TMC, the second major partner in the AIADMK-led alliance won 23 seats and the PMK 18. The Congress secured seven seats, while the CPM got 6, the CPI 5, the AIFB one and an Independent backed by the AIADMK Front.

The DMK had won 30 seats, while its ally the BJP emerged victorious in four seats. The MGR ADMK has won in two places while the DPI won in Mangalur, where its convenor R. Thirumavalavan secured the seat. Several DMK ministers had to taste defeat as an AIADMK wave swept the state.


Will Jayalalitha become CM?
Girja Shankar Kaura
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 13
As the situation became clear in Tamil Nadu after the AIADMK swept the state assembly poll with more than two-thirds majority, there was a question mark over whether or not the party’s charismatic leader, Ms Jayalalitha, could be the new Chief Minister of the state, in view of the number of corruption cases against her and the Election Commission not allowing her to contest the elections.

While the key lay with the Governor of the state, Fatima Beevi, who is said to be already consulting legal experts, there was a difference of opinion among the political parties over the issue. The parties from the “secular force” claimed that there was no hitch in Ms Jayalalitha becoming the Chief Minister, but those from the ruling coalition at the Centre asserted that she could not take oath.

Meanwhile, Ms Jayalalitha, while scotching all speculation, declared that she alone would be the party’s chief ministerial candidate.

“People have given their mandate for me to rule the state. This vote is for me to assume leadership of the state. Putting anyone else in that place would mean disrespect to the verdict of the people. We cannot afford to do this”, she said.

The strongest reaction came from the BJP, which said Ms Jayalalitha could not become the Chief Minister even if she was elected leader of the AIADMK Legislature Party until all cases against her were cleared.

“Even if Ms Jayalalitha is elected leader of the legislature, taking advantage of the law that a person can become Chief Minister for six months before being elected, she has to appeal to the high court to set aside the appeal made in the lower court and till cleared, she cannot be Chief Minister,” BJP President K. Jana Krishnamurthy told newspersons.

However, CPM General Secretary Harkishen Singh Surjeet visualised no hurdle in Ms Jayalalitha becoming the next Chief Minister in Tamil Nadu as the AIADMK-led Secular Front had swept the Assembly elections.

When the electorate had given a massive mandate to her, there should be no hindrance in her becoming the state Chief Minister, Mr Surjeet told newspersons.

The Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC) also said that it would have no objection if the AIADMK chief became the Chief Minister. “Whoever the AIADMK elects, will be the leader. We have no problems.... She has been projected as the Chief Minister,” TMC leader Jayanthi Natarajan said.

The AIADMK supremo, when asked whether she had expected a landslide victory, said: “Yes, I could see the trend. I could see the people’s response. No matter what the Press and TV channels said, I did not take it seriously”.

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