Rangaswamy
Rangaswamy

When the Puducherry assembly election results are declared on Sunday evening, former Chief Minister of the Union Territory and All India NR Congress (AINRC) party chief, N Rangaswamy expects to win and become the Chief Minister. The NR Congress, BJP and AIADMK had contested the elections together under his leadership. NR Congress chief N Rangaswamy, who contested from Thattanchavady and Yanam constituencies, voted at Government Boys Middle School in Thilaspet on April 6.

On March 9, Puducherry BJP in charge, Nirmal Kumar Surana had announced that the party has finalised its seat-sharing deal with the NR Congress and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) for the legislative assembly elections in the Union Territory. "NR Congress, BJP and AIADMK are going to contest the elections together," he had said.

"NR Congress will contest on 16 seats and BJP-AIADMK will contest on 14 seats. We will face elections in Puducherry under the leadership of N Rangaswamy," Surana had said adding that the alliance will contest polls under the leadership of NR Congress chief and former CM N Rangaswamy.

Addressing a press conference, Surana had said that Rangaswamy will lead the alliance. Polling for 30 assembly seats in Puducherry was held on April 6. Of the 30 Assembly seats, five are reserved for the Scheduled Caste candidates. As many as 10,02,589 electors will choose the candidates for the 15th legislative Assembly of Puducherry.

Earlier, going back in history, Rangaswamy was the Chief Minister of Puducherry from 2001-8 representing the Congress party. However, due to internal politics, he resigned from his CM post in August 2008 and formed his own party named All India NR Congress on February 7, 2011. Within three months, in the 2011 Legislative Assembly Elections, his party won 15 seats out of 17 seats it contested and its alliance partner, All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam got 5 out of 10 seats it contested.

Rangaswamy again emerged victoriously and sat on the Chief Ministerial throne from May 16, 2011, till June 6, 2016. Later, he was succeeded by Narayanasamy in 2016. However, in a recent turn of events, in February 2021, the Congress-led government in the Union Territory fell before completing its five-year term under Chief Minister V Narayansamy.

Narayanasamy had resigned on February 22 ahead of a floor test in the 33-member House (including three nominated) following the resignations of five Congress and one Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) legislators. On February 23, President Ram Nath Kovind accepted the resignation of Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy and his council of ministers.

Elections in Puducherry on April 6, which is currently under President's Rule, was mainly between the Congress-Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) alliance and the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) comprising All India NR Congress, All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

The NDA in Puducherry is a rare case where the BJP is not the largest constituent of the alliance. The BJP is contesting on nine seats with the alliance led by the All India NR Congress contesting on 16 seats, and the AIADMK on five seats.

The Congress, whose government in the Union Territory fell in February before completing its five-year term under the Chief Minister V Narayansamy, has also ceded its ground to its allies in Puducherry, giving 13 seats to the DMK and one each to the Communist Party of India and the Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi. The party skipped fielding Narayanasamy. Congress is contesting on only 14 out of its 15 seats now.

The counting of votes is taking place today and the results of the Assembly elections will be declared by the Election Commission in the evening.

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