Well ahead of opponents, the ruling AIADMK on Friday announced the first list of its candidates for the Assembly elections slated for 6 April.
The list has been announced just a day after the AIADMK aspirants were interviewed. It comprises names including chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and deputy chief minister O Panneerselvam who are also the joint coordinator and coordinator of the AIADMK respectively and ministers D Jayakumar and CV Shanmugam.
“Panneerselvam will contest from Bodinayakannur, Palaniswami from Edappadi, his home town, Jayakumar from Royapuram, in Chennai and Shanmugam from Villupuram,” a party release said. Both chief minister and his deputy retained the seats they held from 2011.
The ruling AIADMK on Thursday began to interview the aspirants who have applied to contest from the party seat. A committee which includes Palaniswami and Panneerselvam interviewed the candidates.
Sources said that more than 8,000 candidates who have applied to contest on behalf of the party. The marathon interview was held in two rounds and ended yesterday.
But the seat-sharing talks are still on in the front because an amicable settlement could not be achieved among the BJP and the DMDK.
The AIADMK could only make seat sharing with the PMK by allotting 23 seats to them.
Meanwhile, senior BJP members today held a meeting regarding the seat sharing talks with the AIADMK.
There were speculation about a possible merger of TTV Dinakaran’s AMMK with AIADMK after Sasikala decided to quit politics. It is learned that home minister Amit Shah held talks with senior AIADMK leaders in Chennai regarding this when he visited city a few days back.
Meanwhile, sources said that the BJP had sought to contest around 25 to 30 seats in Tamil Nadu but was being offered around 20 by the AIADMK.
Vijayakant’s DMDK expects to get around 20 seats, however the talks have not progressed smoothly. GK Vaasan’s Tamil Maanila Congress and other allies will get three to four seats, leaving the AIADMK with around 170 seats.